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Name Bonime, Florence
Born / Died 1907–1990

The Florence Bonime collection consists of manuscripts for her novel A Thousand Imitations (Harcourt, Brace and World, 1967); her article “Psychoanalytic Writing: An Essay on Communication,” written with Walter Bonime; and several notes, partial drafts, and research notes. Also present are two printed articles, both published in the Journal of the American Academy of Psychoanalysis, “On Psychoanalyzing Literary Characters,”written with Marianne H. Eckardt (vol. 5, no. 2, 1977); and “Psychoanalytic Writing” (see above; vol. 6, no. 3, 1978).


A noted instructor in creative writing at both Brooklyn College and The New School for Social Research, Florence Bonime (1907 – 1990) published numerous short stories, two novels, and with her husband co-authored the influential text The Clinical Use of Dreams (Basic Books, 1962).

She was born Florence Levine on May 13, 1907 in the Bronx, New York, a daughter of Samuel David Levine and his wife, the former Lena Speiler. At age 16, she began working in advertising, eventually achieving the position of copywriter. By 1925, she had married Louis Cummings, and later published short stories and her first novel, The Good Mrs. Shepard (Crown, 1950) under the name Florence Cummings. The year her novel was published, she began working as an associate editor for Dodd, Mead & Company.

In 1953, she divorced Cummings and the following year married psychologist Walter Bonime. After their collaboration, she became an instructor in creative writing at Brooklyn College for one year (1964-65) before spending a decade in a similar position at The New School for Social Research (1965-75). While teaching at The New School, she published her second novel, A Thousand Imitations (Harcourt, 1967). Mrs, Bonime also founded the Two Bridges Writers’ Group (which continues to this day), inviting several of her more promising students to attend monthly meetings held at her Greenwich Village home.

In 1975, Mrs. Bonime earned her bachelor’s degree from Brooklyn College and went on to pursue doctoral studies at Union Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio. Her 1980 thesis was entitled A Novella: The Duplex . On October 2, 1990, she died peacefully in her sleep at her home in New York, New York at the age of 83.

Library of Congress Subject Headings Women authors, American.
Women editors.
Women teachers.
Creative writing United States.
American literature 20th century.

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