In The Ball is Round: A Global History of Soccer David Goldblatt says of the Parc Lescure stadium in Bordeaux, constructed in the mid 1930s, that it was "the most considered architectural response in stadium design to the grandiose pomposity of fascist arenas and their alliance of concrete modernism and brutal futurism." In making this case, Goldblatt cites its relatively low profile, its presence in the midst of a residential neighborhood, approached from city streets rather than some kind of grand monumental approach, as well as the undulating reinforced concrete of the roofing structure, sans pillars. Indeed, the undulating canopy is altogether two whimsical for a fascist stadium, and the focus on sight lines rather than ornamental and structural pillars is something of a democratic architectural statement.

Contrast that with the most famous example of fascist stadium architecture, the Olympiastadion (or, at the time, the Reichssportfeld) in Berlin, built for the 1936 summer games, and, like the rest of those Olympics, intended as a showcase for the Nazi regimes various racial and physical ideals. The stadium is set in a massive open plaza on what were the western fringes of the city, with a grand entrance past two gigantic rectangular towers. One entered the stadium through a gap in the otherwise unbroken colonnade that made up the exterior. The on the end of the stadium opposite the entrance there was a bell tower, equally severe as the other towers. This was all brawn, ambition, and poured concrete. There was no canopy over the seating - such a utilitarian gesture would have interfered with the general effect of the huge open bowl.

Fast forward 70 years from those Olympics and Germany is hosting the World Cup. In 1974, when West Germany hosted the Cup, Munich with its own newly built Olympic Stadium held the final. This obviously wouldn't do for a Germany (relatively) recently reunited. The final had to be in Berlin, but how to de-Nazify the stadium?
Interestingly enough, it seems that the architects took a page from the stadium in Bordeaux - a canopy, gently undulating (and this time, semi-transparent - that most democratic of states - to let sun in) over the seats. They also sunk the field and lowered the angle of the seating, creating an altogether more intimate, less grandiose setting for watching sport. Of course, as with everything in Germany, the stadium couldn't escape the history of the great ideological struggles of the 30s - the final, France and Italy, was a rematch of a quarter-final match in the 1938 World Cup, when the Italians, dressed all in black, beat France 3-1 in Paris on their way to the championship despite being pelted with rotten fruit by the largely left-wing Parisian crowd

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