Narrate the incidents during the Scramble for Africa 5. Describe the results of the Scramble for Africa 6. Identify countries that were colonies by European countries in Africa European imperialism Imperialism is a term that refers to the economic and political domination or control of one country or nation by another one which is technologically and economically more advanced. Therefore, European imperialism was the economic and political domination of other nations world over by European powers. For more than three centuries the European nations had extended their influence and imperialism into other continents such as Asia, Latin America, the West Indies, and Africa.
The countries involved in the ‘Scramble for Africa’ were Britain, France, Portugal, Spain, Belgium, Germany and Italy. A key economic feature of colonialism was producing and exporting raw materials either agricultural or mineral, precious metals such as gold, silver and copper. Tropical products for luxury consumption such as coffee, sugar, spices, timber and fabrics like cotton. Later when Britain, France and Germany were competing against each other for colonies in Africa in the last quarter of the nineteenth century, the international market had changed rapidly with a huge demand for raw materials for manufacturing such as jute, cotton, rubber and sisal (Bernstein, 1992:48). Mass consumption demand such as tea, sugar and vegetable oils (Bernstein, 1992:48).
These inventions (refer to Document C for examples) caused great economic expansion across Europe. Yet at the same time, these exact inventions caused for a need of more raw materials. This is where Imperialism began to take shape, because before Imperialism in Africa had begun, there were still many examples of Europeans who’d enslaved africans on their own land. Which meant that once raw materials for machines that needed simple labor in a factory rather than the fields were needed to maintain their great economic boost; whichever European country had the most property in Africa, got to conquer the most land in its entirety (Scramble for Africa). Meaning these now obsolete slaves were being subject to have to watch European countries take over their lands and began industrializing on african soil because of how rich in materials the African land is.
By the early twentieth century, however, much of Africa, except Ethiopia and Liberia, had been colonized by European powers. (Hanna. 1969). The European imperialist push into Africa was motivated by three main factors, economic, political, and social. It developed in the
The idea of European superiority and dominance drove the social structure of the "new world", (consisting mainly of North and Latin Americas and the Caribbean). Because of this dominant racial ideology, the native peoples of both regions were often subjects of discrimination and oppression. The extent of their mistreatment differed, as in North America they were simply pushed aside or confined to a certain area to live, while in the Caribbean and Latin America they were forced into servitude and labor. The dominant racial ideology of Europeans also fueled the slave trade that was prominent in the time period of 1500-1830, which involved shipping African slaves to the the Americas to increase the productivity of the colonies. In both areas, slaves were basically property, bought, sold, and traded to do specific and often labor intensive tasks.
One factor that helped economical expansion was industrialization. During colonialism, Africa experienced a rise in its economical power due to new means of exploring natural resources, such as railways and new mining technology, brought in by the Europeans. Even though the colonists took away a large amount of the resources, it still had a massive impact on Africa’s economy as Leander Heldring and James A Robinson stated in their article “Colonialism and development in Africa”. Another factor that helped Africa to expand its economy was the introducing of the African goods on the international market. Education was another good effect of colonialism.
The Rise of Colonialism in Africa Between 1870 and 1900, Europe set out to colonize Africa for their raw materials. Africa was up against invasions of Europe's military and diplomatic pressures. This did not happen without a fight, and Africans were not happy about this attempt to be colonized. With the exception of Ethiopia and Liveria, Africa had been colonized by Europe by the early twentieth century. Europe wanted to set up and colonize in Africa, mainly because of Africa's raw materials it was purely economic.
Access to commodities such as fabrics, spices, and gold motivated a European quest for a faster means to reach South Asia. It was this search that led the Portuguese down the coast of West Africa to Sierra Leone in 1460. Due to several technological and cultural advantages, Portugal dominated world trade for nearly 200 years, from the fifteenth to the sixteenth centuries. While, in the fifteenth century, the rest of Europe was decimated by the Black Plague, Portugal was protected by its physical isolation. Additionally, Portugal had an unusually strong national identity, due to its natural geographic borders, allowing the pooling of the considerable economic resources necessary to fund these ambitious explorations.
To what extend was the colonisation and decolonisation of Britain’s Africa driven by individuals within Africa? Before the 1870’s Africa was largely unknown to the outside world but, in the 1880’s the scramble of Africa began, where European counties, especially Britain all wanted to colonise Africa. Was the whole reason for British colonising Africa economically or strategically driven or was it led by individuals in Africa (men on the spot) or was it more of a top down process led by the government in Britain? And even though Britain fought so hard to control large parts of Africa it is clear that after World II Britain’s empire was declining especially after India gain independence in 1947. However, the British did try to revive their African empire in the late 40’s and early 50’s but their sudden fall into a steep imperial decline with the Suez crises saw individuals like Macmillan to acknowledge that decolonisation was the only way forward, as it would be more beneficial for Britain to decolonise than to resist the rise of nationalism.
Following Marlow’s experience in Africa, Conrad’s Heart of Darkness uses imperialism to explore the negative effects of power on a capitalist society. The initial motives of Europe and its imperialism began on an economic level. The social phenomenon of Marxism is based upon economic activities necessary to provide material needs for a society. As Europe was expanding during their Industrial Revolution, the need for more wealth and economic activity was ever-growing. This need is commonly satisfied through the expansion of power, and in this case, Imperialism.