Raised in the historic city of Isfahan, Mohammad Gharipour received
his Ph.D. in Architectural Theory and History from Georgia Institute of
Technology in 2008 and Masters of Architecture from the University of Tehran in
2000. He teaches architecture at Morgan State University and is the Director and Founding Editor of the International Journal of Islamic Architecture. His
areas of research include Japanese traditional and contemporary architecture,
Persianate gardens and architecture, and restorative environments. He is the
recipient of Spiro Kostof fellowship award from the Society of Architectural
Historians (SAH) in 2008 and the author of several publications including Persian Gardens and Pavilions: Reflections in
Poetry, Arts and History(I.B. Tauris, 2013). in 2014, Dr. Gharipour was presented with the National Endowment for Humanities Faculty Award for his research on Synagogues of Isfahan, Iran.
Kusno, Abidin. "The Ruko: Changing Appearances and Associations of Shophouses in Urban Indonesia." In International Journal of Islamic Architecture, Volume 1, Number 2 (pp. 219-241), edited by Mohammad Gharipour, Bristol: Intellect, 2012.
This article explores the meanings of Chinese shophouses (known as ruko) within the dynamic socio-political and historical contexts of Indonesia. It argues that in order to fully understand this building type, it is necessary to move beyond its architectural characteristics or building typology and engage with the discourses of social perception and meaning production that define the thriving urban environment in Indonesia. Attentive to shifts in meanings across time, it shows how the structure of the ruko serves initially as a catalyst for political repression, then becomes a basis for economic recovery and finally serves as a site for identity formation. The article ultimately argues that studies of a building type should be more attentive to the negotiated relationship between architecture and identity and to the socio-political and cultural contestations within which the built environment is located.
Keywords: Chinese, Jakarta, identity, politics, shophouse