European Imperialism Essay

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European imperialism in the 19th century began with the idea of power and control. There was constant tension between the powers about who the dominant European power was and who had the most money. With the new technologies like gunboats and steam-powered ships and demand for goods and profit, Europeans used their power and ideologies to start conquering and controlling weaker countries. European imperialism was based around the idea of using European dominance and power to create more markets in less advanced countries, build the respective imperialist power’s military, and enforce the imperialist power’s culture and will on the weaker states. Imperialists also wanted to spread their religion to different countries. The annexation of various colonies meant that the imperialists could convert more people to Christianity. It also meant that the more countries the imperialists had, the more markets they could create, which could sell their goods, and therefore generate more money to the imperialists.
The high point of 19th century European Imperialism began with the “Scramble of Africa”. The Scramble for Africa was a competition between European imperialists to get various territories in Africa, seeing that Africa had many raw materials and natural resources like ivory, coal, iron, and rubber to aid the Europeans with trade and manufacturing. Freshly entering into the industrial revolution, new products were being made with manufactured machinery and being transported by steam-powered ships across Europe. Since Africa had a large territory that could be used to establish naval bases and build transport systems for trade, Africa was the ideal place for imperialists. Imperialists believed that they were superior to the lesser nation...

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...and society was shaped. For some countries like India, Imperialism was good because it brought about change in every area politically and economically. India improved under British rule technologically with the new railroads and telegraph lines, improving trade connections, and education. For others, the natives had to stand up and fight for their rights. The many years of tyranny and corruption in the Imperialist governments led to the revolutions all over Western Europe. These revolutions led to more rights and better government. In Africa, the Pan-African Congress led to Africans getting a better role in government, a start in education, and allowed land and natural resources to stay with the natives. It was exactly what Hobson described in the Imperialism document. These fights eventually led to better rights for a majority of the countries who were colonized.
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