Byzantine heritage and Soviet system

Bejan Javakhia


The study of the history of the great Byzantine Empire, stretching across the whole Eurasia during the Middle Ages, has a great importance in itself, but quite often it becomes the subject of the study of political scientists, both as a part of the history of political though and a realm of imperial structure and its general characteristics.

There is a great interest towards the study of the Byzantine legacy in the western scientific circles. The problem is actual both in the Russian political thought as well as among the Russian scientists. The interest is remarkable in the political doctrine of the Russian Church and the creations of the Russian cultural figures. There are several films on the Byzantine history and arts, where the Russian political ambitions and pretenses towards the Byzantine legacy are openly staged.

The newly born Byzantine, born as the New Rome, i.e. the new empire, was capable to live through in its young body, but later, being weakened and enfeebled, was unable to maintain the old face, the ambition of being sole empire of the God. The attempt was very unnatural and quite often even comic. Exactly this type of Rome could be called Bizantinizm. The same is true in respect with Russia, which tried to import Rome in its state from the second half of the 15th century, starting to call Moscow as the third Rome. Although these actions could be seen as the early steps of the Russian Renaissance, but the Renaissance came later, with the western type Russia of the Peter the Great.

It is of our interest to consider the study of the Byzantine state ideology and its comparison with the soviet ideology. Where like the Byzantine Empire, there was one main ideology: one God – one Emperor; God - Pantocrator and Emperor - Autocrator

Similarly, the Soviet state was an ideological empire, with one defined ideology. The role of the head of the country, wich is like an emperor, included both the head of country and defender of ideological doctrine. Such was Stalin’s personality. In the Soviet Union, the cult of personality in the form of Stalin and his ideology to create homo soveticus, without any national values, also took central stage. The Soviet system, as they say, was "the inverted face of Byzantinism". The Soviet state seemed to be more than a secular state. It was not even a secular institution. It was a "Church" with its parodic head - leader, Communism builders council, party as a church. There is the Church of Christ, here is the leader's party. There Christ and the Church as one body, here the unity of the leader and the party




Byzantine, Soviet Sistem, Heritage, Imperia, Stalin, Party

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