Original Research

The understanding and the use of the term Allah as a term for God in translations of the Bible and the Qur’an with specific reference to the Talysh speakers of Azerbaijan

Roelie Van der Spuy
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 49, No 1 | a1895 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v49i1.1895 | © 2015 Roelie Van der Spuy | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 21 October 2014 | Published: 21 August 2015


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Abstract

The term Allah is a term that quite often evokes strong negative emotions in the Western world. Since both the Bible and the Qur’an are being translated into Talysh, it is worth evaluating what term to use for God, and whether it would have a negative effect or not to use the term Allah in these translations. Suggestions are made from a Western point of view that Tanrı, a Turkish term for God, would be a better term touse than Allah, as the term for the word God in translations of the Bible. The Qur’an aswell as some Bible translations use the term Allah, which is one of the most common terms for God in the greater Turkic-speaking world in several languages. Should the Talysh Bible translation follow suit to make the translation culturally more acceptable?

Die verstaan en die gebruik van die term Allah as ‘n term vir God in Bybel- en dieKoranvertalings, met spesifieke verwysing na die Talysh sprekers in Azerbaijan. Die term Allah is een wat altyd baie sterk negatiewe emosies uitlok in the Westerse wêreld. Aangesien die Bybel sowel as die Koran op die oomblik in Talysh vertaal word, is dit betekenisvol om te evalueer watter term vir God gebruik moet word, en of die gebruik van die term Allah enige negatiewe uitwerking op die vertalings sal hê aldan nie. Sekere mense vanuit ’n Westerse wêreldbeskouing reken dat dit meer aanvaarbaar sal wees om die term Tanrı in Bybelvertalings te gebruik as die term Allah. Die Koran sowel as sekere Bybelvertalings in die groter Turks-sprekende area gebruik die term Allah. Allah is een van die mees algemene terme vir God in verskeie tale in daardie area. Moet die Talysh Bybelvertaling ook die voorbeeld navolg en Allah in hulle vertaling gebruik om dit kultureelmeer aanvaarbaar te maak of nie?


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