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. He is also curator of the Archnet collection on Synagogues of Isfahan.
Gruber, Christiane. "The Missiri of Fréjus as Healing Memorial: Mosque Metaphors and the French Colonial Army (1928–64)." In International Journal of Islamic Architecture, Volume 1, Number 1, edited by Mohammad Gharipour, pp. 25-60. Bristol: Intellect, 2012.
The Missiri, or Mosque, of Fréjus was constructed c.1928–30 for the Senegalese riflemen (tirailleurs sénégalais) of the French colonial troops based in the military camps of southern France. Although its appearance seemingly links it with sub-Saharan Islamic architecture, its purpose and uses remained secular. Officials at the camps hoped that the building would induce health and community spirit, while providing a memorial space for deceased soldiers. Through an analysis of the building's shape, function and surviving military documents, this study demonstrates that the Missiri is the material outcome of new ventures in French colonial humanism, ostensible religious tolerance, and the belief that moral rectitude can be expressed through architecture. Moreover, this mosque-like building represents a clear example of a structural form (the mosque) divorced from a particular function (Islamic ritual) and concerned instead with providing a site to commemorate the Senegalese riflemen's contributions to Greater France.