Miriam Bale · @mimbale

9th Jan 2014 from TwitLonger

Renata Adler on a 1968 meeting of the New York Society of Film Critics, for the annual awards:

"I had never gone to its meetings before. (I had seen most of the critics at screenings throughout the year, of course.) This was different. As the voting went from what I thought was mediocrity to mediocrity, as it began to be clear that criticism is everybody's personal world and certainly not a court or a democracy, I decided to walk out. I had never done anything like walking out of something to resign and I didn't do it very well. Stefan Kanfer of Time and Richard Schickel of Life whispered kindly that I should sit down again, since they were planning to walk out too, and had a statement prepared. I sat down and sent a note to Vincent Canby, who agreed. The statement, Mr. Shickel's, I think, was read. There were expressions of outrage, and of regret. Joseph Morgenstern of Newsweek said he had walked out once, but discovered it made no difference. It seemed to be, though, that if Time, Life, and The Times walked out, there would be, in effect, no New York Society of Film Critics. In the end, we all settled for a change of rules, and thought we might resign later, one by one, more quietly. I did realize that a lifelong member of a society of film critics was not something I would like to be. I had known for some time that a year at the movies—at a time when I was at the end of a tether of some kind, wanted to drop out of life for a bit and yet try to cope, about as audibly as some new journalist, with things I cared about—was fine for me, but that was about enough. March, 1969 (from "A Year in the Dark")

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