Western Imperialism In Africa

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In the late 1800s, European countries had economic and geographical advantage over their counterparts in Africa and India, which sparked Western Imperialism. Due to their industrial power, European countries were largely successful in their expansionist policies. Imperialism was enormously beneficial to the national superpowers heading it, fulfilling their economic needs of raw materials and new markets as well as promoting political and military needs. Even though Western Imperialism did improve some aspects of life in other countries such as medical practice, law, and technologies, it served mainly as an obstruction to self-determination and the countries suffered immensely under European rule. Impelled by a sense of racial superiority, Western …show more content…
One of the main reasons for Western Imperialism was the need for more raw materials to fuel industrialization in europe. King Leopold II gained control of the Congo for Belgium. In the Congo, the people were exploited for the personal gain of Leopold II. In one of the most famous incidences, the people of the Congo river basin were essentially forced into slavery, harvesting rubber. If they refused to do so, the hands of the workers were cut off in a barbaric example of what would happen if one chose to resist the Europeans. Other raw materials such as ivory and copper were taken from the congo for use in Europe. These abuses of the African people are brought to the public’s knowledge by the writer ED Morell in his writing “The Black Man’s Burden”. Morell speaks of the damage that imposing capitalistic imperialism on the African people does. Imperialism is worse than slavery because, while slavery completely severs one’s connection to their homeland, Imperialism damages any sense of home beyond repair. There is no escape from the permenant damage of Imperialism for the Africans, as it invaded every aspect of their lives. The long and arduous hours forced upon African workers was completely unnatural for them and led to both a deterioration of the body and spirit. While Europeans were not wholly responsible for the slave …show more content…
Europeans looked to Imperialism to improve their own economy, but did so at the expense of the country in which they were controlling. This was done by taking raw materials from the country as well as forcing them to purchase European manufactured goods. This merchantile system prevented any type of industrialization in the controlled country because they were forced to buy from Europeans and any type of competition was fiercely discouraged. In India, British efforts to modernize the country were really only for their own gain. Britain provided India with more modern textiles that they were expected to purchase due to the fact that they were under British control. Because of these machine made textiles, the previously prosperous habd-weaving industry in India was ruined. Because Indians had to pay for the imported goods from Great Britain, they were forced to grow cash crops such as tea, pepper, coffee, and cotton that could be sold in exchange for the manufactured goods. As a result, farmers were not able to grow as much food, which led to widespread famine in

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