The Golden Age of British Masculinity

IN 1982, a photograph of a Brazilian soccer player named Tom Hintnaus appeared on an enormous billboard above Times Square, lying against a whitewashed wall in Calvin Klein underpants with one arm over his eyes, as if dozing on a Greek island—or waiting for someone to come into his room at the baths. Hintnaus was succeeded by Marky Mark, in Calvin Klein briefs, clutching his crotch on the panels lining my bus stop on Second Avenue. Both figures were smooth-skinned and muscular—part of a new, hairless look that was replacing the hairy-chested clone of the 1970s.

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