Observing both Accuracy and Beauty in Translating Islamic Terms of the Holy Qur'ān: (IM)POSSIBLE?

  • Mahmoud Afrouz
  • Hussein Mollanazar

Abstract

Accuracy, naturalness, clarity, and formal correspondence are considered by translation scholars to be features of ‘Good Translation’. Preservation of all these features does not seem to be always necessary and/or feasible. Therefore, sometimes one feature may be required to be sacrificed for the sake of another. The significance of some expressive religious texts, like the Holy Qur'ān, does not consist merely in its content. The formal beauty or aesthetic features of this greatest literary work cannot simply be neglected. Now, the issue is whether it is practical to preserve both accuracy of the content and beauty of the form as much as possible, or the translator would have no choice but to sacrifice one. In the present paper, the Holy Qur'ān and its 14 English translations were studied and compared based on Aixela’s model. Among the translators, only the Iranian great scholar and poet, professor Nikayin, was the only translator presenting a poetic rendition of the Holy Qur'ān, and therefore, the only one who had attempted to preserve the beauty of the miraculous work. He was also proved to be successful in accurately rendering the concepts underlying Islamic Term and Concepts (ITCs). It was concluded that capable and highly creative translators would potentially be able to observe both the formal beauty and the content of ST, simultaneously.

Author Biographies

Mahmoud Afrouz
Assistant Professor, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran
Hussein Mollanazar
Associate Professor, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran
Published
2017-08-06
How to Cite
Afrouz, M., & Mollanazar, H. (2017). Observing both Accuracy and Beauty in Translating Islamic Terms of the Holy Qur’ān: (IM)POSSIBLE?. Translation Studies Quarterly, 14(56). Retrieved from http://journal.translationstudies.ir/ts/article/view/423
Section
Scientific Articles