There is a very interesting comment posted by Mr. Cappuccino in my previous post about Ayat-ayat Cinta (The movie). The comment suggested “Verses of Love” rather than “The Love Verses” for “Ayat-ayat Cinta” English translation. Seems like Google agree with him in this matter, so which one is correct?
I must admit that in the beginning it was also my confusion to choose one of both options for my very limited language proficiency. I got back to my high school English book (English Grammar in Use by Raymond Murphy ... yes, I still got it in my book case :p) and I found some explanation.
First thing to hold: we have two words i.e. love (= cinta) and verses.(= ayat-ayat)
The probability of English composed phrases would be:
#1 (the) love’s verses
#2 (the) verses of love
#3 (the) love verses
Note that all of them will be literally translated into “Ayat-ayat Cinta” in Indonesian.
To declare a possession, the #1 option is easily omitted because we only employ ‘s for a person, an animal, an organization, and a place. For other things outside them, we employ something of something pattern. Thus, the #2 option would be preferable.
Now what about the #3?
This time we do not only employ grammatical pattern but also the interpretation of the terminology. Let’s check what is exactly intended by the novel author.
I would like to remind that this story offers the beauty of Islamic way of life, principally anything said by the noble book Al Quran. This is somewhat that the movie didn’t tend to clearly state (while the novel did express it in the ending part), that the real “Ayat-ayat Cinta” is the verses of Al Quran. They are the verses presenting as evidence of the divine love of Allah.
If Al Quran = love (no-no-no I didn’t mean to go philosophic, it’s just if they were synonyms) we can take the #2 option. Still, I take the #3 because “Ayat-ayat Cinta” is not a phrase expressing a possession. It is more a composition of a word order (for me).
I compare the “love verses” with “love triangle”; can you see that they are analogous?
I am humbly aware if you got any different view. Never bother to discuss me for more of your finding. Indeed, the term “Ayat-ayat cinta” itself is quite ambiguous that people could take multiple interpretation from. We can see that ambiguity is an old strategy of many writers to improve readers’ curiosity (still, it works in so many cases, right? Haha)
One thing for sure, I still wish this movie and novel will be distributed abroad, no matter what will the translation title be :)