European Imperialism in Africa and Asia

1516 Words4 Pages

Introduction: The epoch of imperialism cannot be defined simply as proliferation of inflated egos tied to the hardened opinions of nationalists, but also a multi-faceted global rivalry with roots of philosophies tainted with racism and Social Darwinism. The technique of each imperialist was specific to the motivations and desires of each combative, predominantly Western power and subsequently impacted the success of each imperialist and its colonies. Driven by industrialization, Europeans were aware of the urgent need for raw materials and new markets to maintain a constant rate of expansion and wealth. Imperialism became a competition; in general, the European countries led with fervor while the non-Western regions deemed likely to be stepped on. Britain was endowed with geographic and political advantages that allowed the country to become the first to unwittingly stumble onto industrialization. Britain was an island, therefore had developed a unique naval strength which subsequently gave Britain leverage when globalization blossomed from expanding maritime trade. Meanwhile, the rest of Europe, including Belgium, trailed behind. Presently, colonized regions still bear the traits and scars from the subjugators of their past. Intensity of Rule: [comparing conquerors] As a political figure, King Leopold of Belgium had minimal power, yet he acknowledged the political and financial advantages of colonization, and acquired the Congo as a private colony whereas Britain snatched up colonies globally, including the “crown jewel” of all colonies, India. Belgium and Britain demonstrated a stark contradiction of two opposing methods of colonization. These two countries methods’ of domination ultimately decided the fates of each party, ... ... middle of paper ... ...teristic disparity of prestige between the two nations contrast greatly since the Belgian Congo was strictly a slave-state used for resources, the Belgians did not provide Western education to their subordinates. As light was shed on the abomination that was the Belgian Congo, historians and explorers flocked to see the inhumane treatment of the devastated colony. Joseph Conrad, a Polish novelist, narrates the character Charlie Marlow, a sailor at the time of imperialism, who had personally witnessed the treatment of the Congolese and said this," After all, that was only a savage sight, while I seemed at one bound to have been transported into some lightless region of subtle horrors, where pure, uncomplicated savagery was a positive relief, being something that had a right to exist—obviously—in the sunshine." (Marlow) Marlow refers sympathetically to the Congolese

Open Document