European Imperialism In The 19th Century

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Nationalism in the 19th century truly set the boundaries for Europe’s newly reformed nations. With technological innovations like the steam engine and Maxim rifle European countries now held a power truly feared by others. With this power, they began to triumphantly expand all over the world. Africa was the country that bore the most sufferable pain. Europe imperialism over Africa resulted in situations where people like King Leopold completely abused and mistreated entire African tribes. But what exactly drove Europe to imperialize Africa? Europeans extended their power over Africa for three reasons: The newly formed economic demand, competition between nations, and the belief in cultural superiority.
The European economy was transformed by
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In simpler terms, European countries competed against each other to determine who was the best. This friendly competition is what led European nations to imperialize Africa. In a lecture excerpt of John Ruskin, a well-regarded English intellectual, he proposes that in order for England to become the center of the world, they must seize as much land as fast as possible(Doc B). This idea was soon adopted by Germany, Italy, Belgium, Spain, and other competitive nations. These dominant countries sought to show off their nation’s pride and power through the amount of land each of them owned. Since African kingdoms in those times were not as developed, it was easy for Europe to conquer African land and soon enough the mad scramble for Africa began. As result in 1884, the Partition of Africa took place (Doc A). In order to avoid disputation between nations, Otto Man Bismarck arranged the Belgian Conference where these nations divided Africa peacefully. The most powerful countries, France and Britain, received the most land(Doc A). This further proves that European nations truly believe they showed power through the amount of land they conquered. It is an unfortunate outcome but Africa did serve as a means of settling the competition between European nations although this friendly quarrel was not the only driving force behind European imperialism. The cultural attitudes of a nation can serve as a hidden motive to conquer the unknown

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