(Yale University Press) The author explores a surprising preoccupation with the disrobing of the king in the golden age of Spanish theater. In reinterpreting two of Lope de Vega’s plays, considered royalist propaganda, Forcione places his texts in the context of political and institutional history, philosophy, theology, and art history. And he shows how Spanish theater anticipated changes in human consciousness that characterized the ascendance of the absolutist state and its threat to the cultivation of individuality, authenticity, and humanity. Forcione is Walter S. Carpenter Jr. Professor of Language, Literature, and Civilization of Spain Emeritus at Princeton University.