In a 1978 article that appeared in the British socialist magazine, Gay Left, Gregg Blachford, while giving voice to emerging feminist critiques of pornography, also recognized the pleasures and political functions of looking and scrutinizing the unclothed, sexualized body. With reference to his first experience of viewing a gay pornographic magazine, he notes:

I remember the very exciting feeling I got when I first saw one of these magazines before I came out. There I saw men kissing and holding and loving each other; something that I never thought possible as the mainstream culture manifests itself in overwhelmingly heterosexual and macho terms. It was proof of a homosexual community and it was through porn that I learned of its existence.1