Document 4 shows how Northern and Central Africa were connected, with part of the connection stemming from the Middle East, a prominent area of Muslims. Document 7 shows the extensive spread of the Mongol Empire, with the outer edges stretching into central Europe. With the Mongols came Islam as well, so the expansion of the empire certainly helped bring the religion and its traders into Europe. Document 10 shows how trade was concentrated throughout Europe, with prominent cities of Muslim inhabitance in the connection, later connecting to North Africa as well. Thus, through this extensive network, Muslims made a bigger cultural impression in Africa.
Western Europe’s expansion of Atlantic trade, through exploration and colonization, not only improved their own economy, but also the economy of America, through sharing new trade products and crops as well as beginning the slave trade. Western Europe began exploring other parts of the world around the mid-1400s. They first started out with primarily explorers from Portugal and Spain. Some of these people were Christopher Columbus, Francisco
Britain’s strategic motives in Africa centred on thwarting the growth of rival European powers as well as securing its interests in Africa. However there was a clear symbiotic relationship between strategic and economic concerns, during the expansion period. One of the first incidents in Africa where this was made manifest was when Britain invaded Egypt in 1882. The Suez Canal was of major strategic importance as it allowed ships to access the empires ‘Jewel in the crown’ India faster, through the red sea instead on going around Africa, as well as faster transportation of Arab oil. The canal was also of economic significance as historian Simon Smith reminds us that ‘80% of the Suez traffic was British, and13% of Britain’s trade passed through the canal’ , this is due to most of Britain’s trade with India passing through the Suez.
The Three Empires The three empires of Ghana, Mali, and Songhai all have a historical past that contribute the history of Africa. Each empire obtained and consolidated dominion over its neighbors, each empire collapse, and what caused the empires to collapse. Ghana started out as a successful empire due to the resources they acquired. They were adopted by the Arabic way, which during the time was a major ideal of the time. Arabic culture help make the empire have dominion over its neighbors.
The defeat of the Armada left Britain with a position of authority and more importantly, a wealthy income. Some of this income was claimed from the Spanish and their treasuries after their defeat. This was known as mercantilism. After this victorious win, mostly due to the engineering of Britain’s ships and the large prestigious royal navy, Britain set up colonies and plantations across the east coast of north America. Britain also established companies in India and Africa.
During the late 1800s and early 1900s, European imperialism radically changed the boundaries inside the continents of Africa and Asia incorporating them into their developing colonial empire. This was the same scenario for British imperialism in India. Over time, the colony and colonizer’s opinion on imperialism evolves, as both experience the downside and upside of colonialism. Britain, mother country of India, had benefitted very much from their colony and dramatically improved the quality of life in India. (doc1) (doc4) Through India, Britain was able to obtain tropical produce for their citizens.
The British involvement in Africa was down to economic reasons; this is clear throughout the time period as most events which take place in Africa can be linked back to economy. One of the most important ecological was the purchase of 44% of the shares in the Suez Canal, these became available when the leader of Egypt; Khedvie Ismali became bankrupt and had to be bailed out. Disraeli bought the Egyptian shares in the canal for £3,976,582 in 1875. The purchasing of these shares was important as it gave Britain influence over this area, but also it opened a direct trade route with India. Due to British and French influence in the area, Britain and France assume dual control of Egypt’s finances.
Eventually, Europeans dominated both trading systems allowing them to run the waters. Also because of location, the routes traded different resources because of what was supplied and how fertile the land was. Trade occurred in the Trans-Atlantic and Indian Ocean route creating a diverse amount of goods. The Trans-Atlantic trade route began the discovery of the new world from the establishment of lands over sea. The Trans-Atlantic trading system mainly took silver from deposits in Potosí, Bolivia, thus, creating a connection to the old and new world.
Diamond summarizes his answer to Yali’s question essentially attributing the environment for the success of the Europeans and discredits racial superiority of any sort. Although other factors contributed to the rise of the European civilization, the environment was the main factor. Some specific factors falling under environment that affected the European civilization are geography, food production, diffusion and population. Diamond explains the importance of writing in the European society. Literacy allowed them to conquer foreign lands easily because through writing, they could now have maps, sailing directions, and descriptive reports of previous sailors which would improve their experience.
However, in the time before the Europeans arrived in Africa in the late 15th century, the civilizations of Africa had already accomplished many great things. We have a multitude of unbiased accounts about the success and importance of many African empires, kingdoms, and cities. The Aksumite empire was an important international trading center, and was a major stop on many trade routes along the coast of the Red Sea, and inland towards the Nile River and the Sahara Desert. The ancient kingdom of Ghana, at one time in its history, was the controller of the trans-Saharan gold and salt trade, and made sure that the world knew it. The court of the Ghanaian king was described as a luxurious place filled with luxurious people; even the dogs wore collars of gold and silver.