Meanings of near-synonyms and their translation issues in the holy Qur'ān

Abdul Qader Khaleel Mohammed Abdul-Ghafour, Norsimah Mat Awal, Intan Safinaz Zainudin, Ashinida Aladdin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Holy Qur'ān includes near-synonyms which have seemingly similar meanings but convey different meanings upon deeper analysis of the semantic constituents of these words. Such near-synonyms usually pose a challenge that often presents itself to the translators of the Holy Qur'ān. This study investigates the meanings of near-synonyms and their translation issues in the Qur'ān. It aims to identify the contextual meanings of Qur'ānic near-synonyms based on different exegeses of the Qur'ān. Then, it explains the nuances that exist between the pairs of Qur'ānic near-synonyms and how such nuances are reflected in two English translations of the Qur'ān. The study adopts the Relation by Contrast Approach to Synonyms (RC-S) as a theoretical framework for data analysis. It also employs the qualitative approach for collecting and analyzing the data of the study. Besides, it makes use of different exegeses of the Qur'ān to identify the differences in meaning between each pair of the Qur'ānic near-synonyms. The analysis of the data reveals that there exist some nuances between the pairs of Qur'ānic near-synonyms in terms of denotative and expressive meaning. The findings also show that the differences in meaning between the pairs of near-synonyms are not reflected in the English translations. Therefore, the study recommends that readers as well as translators should look for nuances between Qur'ānic near-synonyms whenever they find two words with similar meanings in order to perceive the Qur'ānic text appropriately and translators should make an effort to reflect the nuances between the pairs of near-synonyms in their translation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)258-273
Number of pages16
JournalGEMA Online Journal of Language Studies
Volume17
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2017

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translator
exegesis
Holy
Synonyms
Qur
data analysis
semantics
Translator
English Translation
Exegesis

Keywords

  • Connotative meaning
  • Contextual meaning
  • Denotative meaning
  • Near-synonyms
  • Translation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Literature and Literary Theory

Cite this

Meanings of near-synonyms and their translation issues in the holy Qur'ān. / Mohammed Abdul-Ghafour, Abdul Qader Khaleel; Mat Awal, Norsimah; Zainudin, Intan Safinaz; Aladdin, Ashinida.

In: GEMA Online Journal of Language Studies, Vol. 17, No. 4, 01.11.2017, p. 258-273.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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