ARCADIE, the first GLBT group in France, is formed by André Baudry. A former seminarian and philosophy professor, Baudry became interested in the debate about sexuality following the publication of the Kinsey Report in 1948, the Deuxieme Sexe (The Second Sex) by Simone de Beauvoir in 1952,the theology thesis of the same year entitled Vie Chrétienne et problèmes de la sexualité by Marc Oraison. This thesis, which clearly articulated the position for the Catholic Church to take a more inclusive attitude towards homosexuality, was blacklisted by the Church.

The Arcadie review was created by Baudry with the support of Roger Peyrefitte and Jean Cocteau. It was immediately forbidden for sale to minors and was censured. André Baudry was prosecuted in 1955 for “outrage aux bonnes mœurs” (outrage against good morals), convicted, and fined 400,000 francs. The review emphasized homosexuality as a form of consciousness and self-identity as opposed to a sexuality per se. Baudry sought to shape the popular image of homosexuals as conventional members of society with conventional desires. 

In 1960, at the time of the promulgation of the Mirguet amendment which cast homosexuality as the source of all social ills, Baudry eliminated the classified ads and photographs from the review, out of fear of being shut down. During its years of publication, Arcadie was the most influential homophile publication in francophone Europe