(Re)constructing Narratives in Qur'an Translation


Negative and distorted narratives about Islam and Jihad in the Western media, in general, and in certain publications, in particular, have increased with the emergence of terrorist and radical groups in the past decade. Narrative theory has recently expanded to include the study of translations and other types of texts in order to show how ideology and power relations affect narration and potentially steer public opinions. This paper scrutinizes the negative narratives constructed and reinforced over time by both some Western publications after the emergence of ISIS and by some leaders of terrorist groups such as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), about Islam in general and about Jihad in particular. It examines a number of narratives regarding jihad and war-related verses put forth by both the Western publications and ISIS leaders in light of Mona Baker and Sue-Ann Jane Harding’s theories of narrative. It is found that negative narratives proliferate distorted images and misconceptions about Jihad and Islam. These narratives have contributed to a meta-narrative in which Jihad and Islam are contiguous with terrorism, and that these narratives have therefore contributed to global Islamophobia.


Anjad A. Mahasneh


Jihad, Jihadism, meta-narrative, public narrative, terrorism, translation


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