Nancy Freedman

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Nancy Mars Freedman (born July 4, 1920, in Evanston, Illinois, died August 10, 2010, in Greenbrae, California) was an American feminist novelist, the co-author of Mrs. Mike.[1]

Freedman (née Nancy Mars) was a professional child actress for touring stage plays, and she met her husband Benedict Freedman in 1940 in Hollywood, where he was working as a writer and she was trying to break into movies. They married in 1940 despite her poor health, which began with a bout of rheumatic fever at age three and lasted her entire life.[1]

She began writing novels with her husband in 1947 with Mrs. Mike, the fictionalized story of their friend Katherine Mary Flannigan who married a Mountie and moved from Boston to the Canadian wilderness. It became a bestseller and inspired a 1950 film adaptation. The two Freedmans wrote nine more novels together,[2] and Freedman wrote several more by herself. Her later works, including Mary, Mary Quite Contrary (1968) and Sappho: The Tenth Muse (1998) have been called "ardently feminist."[1] Her book Joshua Son of None (1973) was a political thriller about the clandestine cloning of a young assassinated President (strongly implied to be, although never actually named as, John F. Kennedy).

Freedman's son, Michael Freedman, became a noted mathematician, and her two daughters also work in academia as a musician at the University of California, Berkeley and as the director of the medical humanities program at the University of California, Irvine.[2]


  1. ^ a b c McLellan, Dennis (August 22, 2010), "Nancy Freedman dies at 90; feminist had long and wide-ranging literary career", Los Angeles Times.
  2. ^ a b Nelson, Valerie J. (March 4, 2012), "Benedict Freedman dies at 92; author and Occidental professor", Los Angeles Times.