Postcolonialism And Colonialism

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Decades have passed since colonialism first occurred but yet many repercussions can still be observed in several countries that were once colonies.
This essay aims to address the concept that is colonialism and also to clearly define the relationship between colonialism and imperialism in order to get a clearer understanding of colonialism. It will also address one of the contested legacies in a postcolonial contest and specifically define what the aim of postcolonialism is. Readings by Daniel Butt will be used as well as various other sources to strengthen the argument.


In general, colonialism is confused with imperialism. Daniel Butt makes this clear in his article on colonialism: “A recurrent problem concerns the relation
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This means simply that postcolonialism looks at the legacies which are still carrying on, decades after colonialism. One of these contested legacies are deeply imprinted into the minds of many people, the idea that not everything left behind from colonialism was bad. This can be seen in a tweet from Helen Zille (2018) “… I said the LEGACY of colonialism (i.e what was left behind) was not ONLY negative.”. Is this a fair statement? It is important to take into consideration that what most people know of colonialism is what is taught by Western literacy, this paints a lovely picture of advanced (mostly European) countries entering a specific community and “saving” them from their “backwards” ways. As Butt also states “What this suggests is that a literature on the ethics of colonialism written by Western academics with little regard to the voices of those who have suffered domination runs the risk not only of misunderstanding the nature, but of compounding the effects, of historical injustice” (2013: 6). This means that for people to say that the effects weren’t all bad, is just as unfair as colonialism itself because they would be judging it from the Western point of view and totally ignoring the voices and stories of people that actually suffered through colonialism. The idea that colonialized countries would not have developed if it was not for the countries that colonialized them is not a fair judgement because they would have progressed in their own time and in their own way. Many cultures are now completely extinct due to colonialism. Thus it can be argued that the idea of what was left behind “… was not ONLY negative” (Zille, 2018) is a very Eurocentric way of thinking and fails to address the actual people that

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