Essay on Colonialism via Globalism in Joseph Addison’s The Spectator No.69

Essay on Colonialism via Globalism in Joseph Addison’s The Spectator No.69

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The first step of globalisation is colonisation. When looked at the beginnings of colonisation, however, the vice versa of the sentence is the case. The first step of colonisation is globalisation. As the European countries started discovering new lands and grew accustomed to thinning their borderlines for trade, they gradually found out about a more profitable way, that is, colonising wherever they found weaker than themselves. Only when the colonised nations woke up and fought for their own borders the colonisation came to an end. Notwithstanding, they had already been overly-exposed to Europe’s so called “civilised” cultures, and this gave birth to a hybrid-culture phenomenon. Thus begun globalisation. Whether it is neo-colonisation, or something beyond that, it is still questionable. After all, the most ongoing modern wars are psychological ones, and destroying cultures under the name of globalisation is what invading a country looks like nowadays.
To understand the role of international trading in the expanding of colonisation, Joseph Addison’s essay from The Spectator, “The Royal Exchange” (No. 69, 1711) is a very helpful text. The text simply describes a financial institution’s international composition. The first of the signs of a desire to dominate the trading world is seen here, starting with the words “my vanity as I am an Englishman” (Addison 2650). However, the rest of the sentence “to see so rich an Assembly of Countrymen and Foreigners consulting together upon the private Business of Mankind” softens the expression, and gives a sense of modern globalisation. The Spectator doesn’t seem to be leaning on the binaries found on the group of people in the Royal Exchange. Therefore while giving hints of the feeling of su...


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...balisation can turn into colonisation with the spark of a desire for power. It promotes the idea of globalisation and sheds light to the situation found three centuries later in the present day, for globalisation is a post-colonial phenomena as well as the spark that started colonialism. It is true the age of colonies are over, but its ghost still continues to haunt the former colonies under the name of globalisation, especially those which were mostly exploited at the time.


Works Cited
Said, Edward W. “Culture and Imperialism.” Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism 2nd ed. Ed. Leitch, Vincent B. and William E. Cain, eds. New York: Norton, 2010. 651-655. Print.
Addison, Joseph. “The Spectator, No. 69 The Royal Exchange” The Norton Anthology of English Literature vol. 1. Ed. Greenblatt, Stephen. and Carol T. Christ, eds. New York: Norton, 2012. 2649-2652. Print.

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