Iris Barry (1895–1969) was the first woman film critic in England. A leader and innovator, she not only held her own in a predominantly masculine world, but also surpassed her male colleagues. From 1924 to 1930, during the transition from silent to sound pictures, she wrote for the Spectator and the Daily Mail. In 1925, opposing the prevailing censorship and advocating avant-garde films, she helped found the London Film Society, which became the prototype of the British Film Institute and of adventurous film groups throughout Europe and America.

Barry created the Film Library of the Museum of Modern Art in 1935 and was its pioneering curator until her retirement fifteen years later. During that time she taught film courses at Columbia and traveled widely through Europe and into Russia while attending film festivals and meeting prominent filmmakers, such as Sergei Eisenstein and Roberto...


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