Greeks always liked to put themselves above any other nationality and culture. So called “barbarians” were the non-Greek people, and the word barbarian actually means “muttered/babble”- those who can not speak Greek clearly. Greeks seemed their language as true human tongue. All strangers, foreigners were considered as uncivilized men. But were barbarians worse or weaker than Greeks or Romans?
“In the absence of any technological advantage, the conflict between Rome and the barbarians was almost entirely a purely physical and moral struggle, between a physically and morally enfeebled Empire, and more vital, healthy, prolific tribes. In comparing Rome to the West today, what is striking is the noticeable lack of any ideologies of self-hatred among the Romans (although some like historian Edward Gibbon have argued that Christianity fulfilled that role), as well as of any unusually pronounced hatred of Rome by the barbarians. “(Wegierski, Mark. “Sixteen years since “9/11” – the “Fall of Rome” and the “Decline of the West””. Quarterly Review (UK).September 11, 2017)
In this article, author use the word “barbarian” to name the Rome Empire’s enemies, people who wanted to invade to the territories of the Rome. He describe them as a powerful force that is able to attack and take over the city or the whole Empire. By writing this article Weigierski comparing the events that happened in Roman Empire, the fight between Rome and Germanic tribes(barbarians), with a 9/11 events to show how those strangers, “others” negatively impact already formed, huge and powerful society. And I believe it was written for American adults audience to make them think about how to avoid the collapse of a country.
However, if to read the historical article from actual Ancient time: “Herodotus”, there are some differences and similarities between the sense of the word “barbarian”. Herodotus described war between Greece and Persia, and he states: “The Asiatics, when the Greeks ran off with their women, never troubled themselves about the matter; but the Greeks, for the sake of a single Lacedaemonian girl, collected a vast armament, invaded Asia, and destroyed the kingdom of Priam. Henceforth they ever looked upon the Greeks as their open enemies. For Asia, with all the various tribes of barbarians that inhabit it, is regarded by the Persians as their own; but Europe and the Greek race they look on as distinct and separate.”(1.4 p.3)
Again, here the barbarians are invaders but in the article they are described with a negative tone which shows an objection towards them.
-Yuliya, Team Minerva