This essay outlines Sojourner Truth’s and Harriet Tubman’s articulations of an intersectional black feminist agenda for old-age justice. The two most famous formerly enslaved women in the nineteenth-century United States, Truth and Tubman in their speeches, activism, and published Narratives revealed the mechanisms of domination through which enslavers and employers of domestic servants extracted productive and reproductive labor from black women, who in turn faced premature debility and immiseration at the end of life. Truth and Tubman linked what is now called necropolitics—“subjugation of life to the power of death,” in Achille Mbembe’s phrase—to the coercive organization of care work, what Evelyn Nakano Glenn refers to as being “forced to care.” They point to the importance of gendered and racialized labor to the history of old age in America.

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