Scholars have argued that dispossessed laborers turned to other forms of labor in lieu of their traditional livelihoods, including brigandage, piracy, begging, and cozening. To this list of alternative communities and applications of labor in the early modern period, Matthew Kendrickâs scholarship adds the London theaters. Each chapter is guided by the central premise that anxiety over the objectification and dispossession of labor in its various forms is enacted on stage, and that drama helps to formulate, by merit of the theaterâs socioeconomic identity, an emerging laboring subjectivity engendered by the violent development of capitalism. As the nexus of a declining feudal social structure and an emerging capitalist regime of commodity production, a location in which dispossessed labor intersected with traditions of skilled labor and the unwieldy consumerist energies of the marketplace, the space of the theater was uniquely situated to channel and give dramatic form to the growing antagonisms and tensions that shaped labor. The stage offers a space in which to negotiate the value and meaning of labor in an increasingly exploitative society.