November 14, 2007

The Perils of Translation

We all know how easy it is to criticize translators for the perceived errors of their work, but some cultures take this to extremes. Reuters reports that Ghaus Zalmai was arrested as he tried to cross from Afghanistan into Pakistan for the "crime" of publishing an unauthorized translation of the Qur'an. The publication of Zalmai's tranlsation triggered an emergency session of the Afghan parliament, which prohibited Zalmai from leaving the country, and, according to the Gulf Times a demonstration in Jalalabad by over 1,000 university students demanding that he be put to death. The Supreme Court of Afghanistan has ordered an investigation into the publication of the translation, and Afghan police are reported to be looking for Qari Mushtaq, an imam who reportedly gave his approval to the translation.

These people need to learn about book reviews.

Posted by Bill Poser at November 14, 2007 03:21 AM