Imperialism in 19th Century Essay

1.What were the causes of the new imperialism of the 19th century and how did it differ from European expansion in earlier periods? Early European expansion was for the most part, an economic desire of the country to expand its territory and wealth. This new imperialism of the 19th century was a race to grab up non-European claimed territories to prevent their competition from gaining any advantage. It was also the need to fuel their industrial factories that emerged from the industrial revolution.

Europeans needed the raw material from the east and to open new trade markets to move the goods they produced.

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2. What types of administrative systems did the various colonial powers establish in the colonies, and how did these systems reflect the general philosophy of colonialism? The general philosophy of Colonialism was based on The Social Darwinism law of “survival of the fittest”. The philosophy that the countries that changed to fit the modern times would thrive. Direct rule of British Colonies and assimilation in French Colonies were motions of overpowering and replacing authorities resistant to their new change.

Indirect rule of British Colonies in association of French Colonies were more of a collaboration of local authorities to move in to move in modernization together with both sides benefiting.

3. What factors were behind the “Scramble for Africa” and what impact did it have on the continent? The “Scramble for Africa” began in the mid-1880’s and included countries such as Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain and Portugal. There were economic factors, but the scramble was more of a fear driven conquest. The fear that if a country did not claim a territory in Africa, another European state would. The purpose of spread Christianity was also a motive. In the end, Africa was for the most part under indirect rule of various European countries, leaving local people to pay taxes and practice their own culture, but under European laws.

5. Why did the Qing Dynasty decline and ultimately collapse, and what role did the western powers play in this process? The Qing Dynasty declined and ultimately collapsed after decades of peace because of official corruption, peasant unrest, and incompetence of the courts. The booming population growth and old tyrant rule created unrest. Western powers were pushing China to open more trading ports, but China always resisted. Western powers then demonstrated their naval and military superiority. This was accomplished by denying trade during the opium wars. Forcing China to open to a modernizing world.

7. To what degree was the Meiji Restoration a “revolution”, and to what extent did it succeed in transforming Japan? The Meiji Restoration was a revolution in the sense that is changed Japan very rapidly. Change was made and outside influence was embraced and practiced willingly. Unlike other revolutions, the Restoration was done mostly without violence or revolting of the common people. Most of Japan was ready and willing for this modernization. Making the process fast and peaceful.

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