The Presence of the "Barbarian".
On Contaminations in the Music of Ancient Greece

Variant title

La presenza del "barbaro". Sulle contaminazioni nella musica dell'Antica Grecia


Western musical culture has its roots in ancient Greece. In the history of music, therefore, the Hellenic world constitutes both the origin of an entire musical system that over the centuries has imposed itself hegemonically, and an inexhaustible source of historical, philosophical, and theoretical resources that Western musical culture has cyclically referred to, mainly to legitimize itself. Among these resources, one that historically has been the most discussed, most narrated, and most analyzed concerns the relationship based on the Hellenic/Barbarian duality. This has been sometimes understood in terms of conflicting repulsion, other times in terms of enriching cultural exchanges, and, finally, as a representation biased by ethnocentric ideologies and prejudices.

Article history

Received 24 May 2022. Revised 27 June 2022. Accepted 30 June 2022. Published online 12 July 2022




Italian (it)


Emanuele RaganatoUniversity of Salento in Lecce


Orbis Idearum Volume 10, Issue 1 (2022), 75-83
Regular Issue