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Likelihood-based, or explicit, deep generative models use neural networks to construct flexible high-dimensional densities. This formulation directly contradicts the manifold hypothesis, which states that observed data lies on a low-dimensional manifold embedded in high-dimensional ambient space. In this paper we investigate the pathologies of maximum-likelihood training in the presence of this dimensionality mismatch. We formally prove that degenerate optima are achieved wherein the manifoldarXiv:2204.07172v3 fatcat:4c74ka3g7jgohnyuqwltrxdvhy