The Qur'an does not say beat your wife if she is disobedient; it says beat her if you merely "fear" or suspect disobedience

Below are ten translations of a notorious portion of Qur'an 4:34, the beat-your-disobedient-wife verse. 

Six of the ten translations use the word "beat."

Two translations use the word "scourge," which as a verb means to whip.

And two of the translations use the word "chastise." Most dictionaries give corporal punishment (beating, or "stripes") as one of the main definitions of "chastise."

Some of the translators insert softening words in parentheses. None of the insertions in parentheses are in the original Arabic of the Qur'an.

Pickthall: "and scourge them"
Yusuf Ali: "(And last) beat them (lightly)"
Al-Hilali/Khan: "(and last) beat them (lightly, if it is useful)"
Shakir: "and beat them"
Sher Ali: "and chastise them"
Khalifa: "then you may (as a last alternative) beat them"
Arberry: "and beat them"
Rodwell: "and scourge them"
Sale: "and chastise them"
Asad: "then beat them"
Dawood: "and beat them."

Here's Aisha Bewley's version of Quran 4:34:
Men have charge of women because Allah has preferred the one above the other and because they spend their wealth on them. Right-acting women are obedient, safeguarding their husbands’ interests in their absence as Allah has guarded them. If there are women whose disobedience you fear, you may admonish them, refuse to sleep with them, and then beat them. But if they obey you, do not look for a way to punish them. Allah is All-High, Most Great.