Alexey Lidov studies how Byzantine heritage is used by current politicians. The recent conversion of Byzantine museums into mosques in Istanbul serves as a good example, Lidov's research is focused on different aspects of this political act inside Turkey and in the international community. Another topic of interest is the attempt to adopt the Byzantine mythology in Russia. Can the analysis of this attempt help to understand how this heritage may coexist with nationalistic discourses in other European countries of the so-called Byzantine Commonwealth?
This project examines perceptions of the Byzantine legacy in contemporary Russia and its relation to a more general question of European identity. Two absolutely different traditional narratives exist. According to one of them, the Byzantine legacy is a totally negative phenomenon in Russian history. Others try to present this Orthodox Empire as an ideal for both state and society. This historical fight, ongoing since the early 19th century, prevents the country from establishing and consolidating a European identity.