Sarah Nicolazzo discusses how studying literature can shed light on the history of capitalism – and how the 18th century cultural and legal category of vagrancy shaped the development of labor markets.
Ever wondered about the longer history of police programs to push certain people out of public space – like L.A.’s Safer Cities Initiative or New York City’s stop and frisk policy? Curious how literature can shed light on the history of capitalism? Want to know what Adam Smith has to do with the concept of vagrancy? Listen to find out.
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Sarah Nicolazzo is Assistant Professor of Literature at University of California at San Diego. She is completing a manuscript provisionally entitled Vagrant Figures: Law, Labor, and Refusal in the Eighteenth Century Atlantic World.