Consequences of Imperialism Term Paper
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Consequences of Imperialism
For four hundred years, the world has been quite aware of the European imperialism. Examples of European imperialism were found not only in Europe but also in other continents as a result of outward European expansion. The word Imperialism was basically invented during the mid-nineteen century when the age of autocracy was on the rise. Imperialism has led to multiple effects of globalization and multiculturalization in the modern day Europe.
European imperialism was greatly concentrated in the regions of Africa and Eastern Asia. These were the only two areas that were not influenced by the Europeans till the 1870.
The decades between 1870 and 1914 speedily completed the expansion of European influence and civilization over the whole of the earth; and it was accomplished in an era when the realism, ruthlessness, and rivalries of European national governments were exceptionally great. It therefore had a temper uniquely masterful and remorseless, brooking no obstacles and pushfully self-assertive. This quality came as much from the nature of European politics as from the urges of European economic development (David Thomson, World Wide Imperialism).
Since there existed no international organization to exercise any kind of control over the colonial expansion of Europe, the naked European power flourished. The European economic conditions and the anarchic political relations were the two prime factors, which led to the expansion of imperialism.
Regions of Africa and Asia proved to be very attractive to the Europeans since they offered many raw materials needed by the European industries to flourish. As a result the European markets prospered and expanded by occupying the overseas market.
The competitive, protectionist mood of European politics they found governments responsive enough to national needs to undertake the political conquest of undeveloped territories. For this purpose, Africa and Asia served admirably. It was
in these economic and political circumstances that the urge to exploit backward territories by the investment of surplus capital could make so much headway. It began especially after 1880, and gained rapidly in momentum until 1914 (David Thomson,
World Wide Imperialism).
Africa and Asia provided excellent opportunities to the Europeans for investments but the issues of security prevented widespread venture. After 1918, imperialism resulted in a war. "It was normally the coexistence of economic interests with political aims which made a country imperialistic; and in some, such as Italy or Russia, political considerations predominated" (David Thomson, World Wide Imperialism).
The French sought excessive manpower in the regions of Africa. Among the missionaries that were sent to Africa, the most famous was David Livingstone sent by the London Missionary Society. He later returned to Europe after opening a way for both commerce and Christianity. After that, France sent more people to persuade the Africans to convert to Christianity. "By 1875 they spread from Algeria into Tunisia, and set up a religious protectorate that preceded the political protectorate. Gambetta said of Lavigerie, 'His presence in Tunisia is worth an army for France" (David Thomson, World Wide Imperialism).
Hence, European imperialism not only exploited the African and the Asian territories for commerce but also its people in the name of religion. Zadie Smith said, "the century of strangers...the century of the great immigrant experiment" (White Teeth, Chapter 12). From 1875 and onwards, Africa became the commodity of the European nations. "In the generation between 1871 and 1900 Britain added 4.25 million square miles and 66 million people to her empire; France added 3.5 million square miles and 26 million people; Russia in Asia added half a million square miles and 6.5 million people" (David Thomson, World Wide Imperialism). By 1896, France took control of Dahomey, Algeria, Senegal, Guinea…
Sources Used in Documents:
David T. World Wide Imperialism. 1966. Available on the address http://mars.acnet.wnec.edu/~grempel/courses/world/lectures/imperialism.html.. Accessed on 18 Mar. 2004.
Gorm R.O. Europe's And Africa's Failed States: From Development To Containment.
Available on the address http://www.theglobalsite.ac.uk/press/105olsen.htm. Accessed on 18 Mar. 2004.
Zadie Smith. White Teeth. Vintage. 12 Jun. 2001.
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