New Imperialism and Colonization

Topics: Colonialism, Capitalism, Imperialism Pages: 2 (551 words) Published: January 17, 2015
Account for New Imperialism in the 19th century

New Imperialism was the expansion of European countries over foreign lands between 1870 and 1914. During this time, European policies (economic, political and social) were formalised in most of Africa. After the industrial revolution, nations wanted to invest in new colonies, as they searched for more prestige. They wanted to increase their trade with bigger markets, more infrastructures and raw materials, which they could find in Africa. Colonising Africa also meant alleviating pressure back in the homeland.

At the end of the 19th century, most European countries were motivated to colonise due to political rivalry. There was a competition for international power and prestige as having large territories was a sigh of high ranks. By 1871, Germany had already acquired a lot of territory which posed a threat to Britain and France and increased rivalry. Formal imperialism was when a country had both political and economic power in a colony but informal was when they only used the territory to exploit its resources. The scramble for Africa is thought to be mostly about economic reasons. European powers wanted new raw materials that couldn’t be found in western countries such as ivory, rubber, oil and gold. They secured free trade with what they call aggressive imperialism (imperialism where force is used), to ensure that they could benefit from these precious resources. What territories a country obtained also determined how much power they would gain. Strategic locations like Egypt were secured by Britain which meant they had full control over the Suez Canal, enabling them to have easy access to Asia. Access to bigger markets was important at the end of the 19th century because rivalries between countries meant that trade was slowed down in Europe and each nation had more goods to sell or to buy.

Social and moral reasons were also known causes of New Imperialism. Back “at home” countries had to deal with...
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