Feminist symbols in the Arab world #1: Qatar’s World Cup stadium

Feminist symbols in the Arab world #1: Qatar’s World Cup stadium


norman lebrecht

November 19, 2013




qatar stadium

The design is by Zaha Hadid, Iraqi-born British architect. See more below:


  • Jeffrey Levenson says:

    I see an upcoming concert by Pussy Riot!

  • Mikko says:

    Maybe Sir Norman could design a version of the Gherkin to be erected next to that?

  • Bosse Bergkvist says:

    A feminine symbol, indeed! But “feminist” symbol?

  • A new version of Gustave Courbet’s famous painting “L’origine du monde”!

    • Phil says:

      I’ve long since lost track of what feminism means, and I did not understand it in the first place. This seems as good a symbol as any!

  • Neil van der Linden says:

    Having studied biology, and from my interest in herbology before, I can say the shape also reminds me of the stoma that is part of the plant leaf structure. And that would also make a symbolic sense. While I also like it that if Hadid indeed made a reference the female genitalia, which effect she must have considered, it is also an attempt maybe to take the shape out from a sexist context. It is intended as respectful, not as a dirty joke.

    But here is an article by a (woman) journalist for the Guardian about the symbolism. NB She wrote it before she realised that the architect was (nobody less than) Zaha Hadid! (Woman, and from the Arab world). http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/nov/18/qatar-accidental-vagina-stadium-al-wakrah-world-cup-stadium

  • DavisA says:

    Built by near slave labour, according to reports.