Overview of British Imperialism

2240 Words9 Pages
Overview of British Imperialism

Imperialism is when a world power colonizes a smaller country or kingdom, and then proceeds to exploit the land and resources of the kingdom or country. Through the majority of the 18th century, imperialism was a dominant force on global relations. During the peak of the Age of Imperialism, Queen Victoria and her British empire dominated the world. British Imperialism started in the late 1700’s because of population growth and the advances in technology industrialism that occurred during the Industrial Revolution. The areas that the British imperialized during this time period include India, a large part of Africa, and Australia.

The Industrial Revolution, a notable evolution in production technologies and specialized machineries, became one of the main causes of British imperialism. As the need for more advanced materials grew to support the Industrial Revolution, many nations sought foreign territory which could supply their quickly-growing demand. The Industrial Revolution allowed England to develop better weapons, such breech loading rifles and better ships which helped to conquer different territories. In addition, the British started colonizing and taking control of various countries because they provided new trade opportunities and more income for the mainland. Religion and social Darwinism played another major part in this global force, due to a belief that it was “the white man’s burden” to colonize and “modernize” the rest of the world which they saw as developmentally inferior.

Furthermore, the concept of Social Darwinism only grew as the exploration of the world quickly advanced . Social Darwinism is a perversion of the scientific concept of natural selection applied to real li...

... middle of paper ...

.... The Cambridge Illustrated History of the British Empire. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996.

Marshall, Peter. "The British Presence in India in the 18th Century." BBC News. http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/empire_seapower/east_india_01.shtml (accessed April 4, 2014).

Nayar, Pramod K.. Colonial voices the discourses of empire. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell, 2012.

Proudfoot, Lindsay J., and Dianne Hall. Imperial spaces placing the Irish and Scots in colonial Australia. Manchester: Manchester University Press :, 2011.

Spielvogel, Jackson J.. Glencoe world history: modern times. New York: Glencoe/McGraw-Hill, 2005.

Streets, Heather. "The Rebellion of 1857: Origins, Consequences, and Themes ." South Dakota State University. http://www.sdstate.edu/projectsouthasia/Resources/upload/The-Rebellion-of-1857-Streets.pdf (accessed April 6, 2014).

More about Overview of British Imperialism

Open Document