Beginning in the mid 1800’s, the scramble for Africa proved to be one of the most important events in World History. The term “scramble for Africa” describes the rush and uttermost important desire that European countries had to imperialize the countries in Africa. Imperialism is the dominance of a stronger country over a smaller one politically and economically. Stronger countries imperialize weaker countries in order to gain new resources and acquire a better trade system. The Europeans desire to imperialize Africa was driven by their perception of god, gold, and glory.
The European Imperialism in Africa and Asia Imperialism started in the late eighteenth century and continued to the early 1900s when Europeans took over different countries to obtain economic, political and social power. The five reasons behind imperialism were exploratory, ethnocentric, political, religious, and economic. Exploratory meant people went to a new area of land to learn more about it and discover new things. Ethnocentric meant they wanted to spread their beliefs, cultures and customs that they thought were correct and religion reasons were similar because they wanted to spread their religion. Political reasons were so that they could obtain power and economically, they wanted to make money through trade and new businesses.
This change in rate of growth for exports in Great Britain was a cause for competition in Africa among the European countries with the resources Africa was providing such as copper, zinc, lead, and coal. Which were used for coins, metal alloys, electrical wiring, rust protection, and ammunition fuels. A lot in which Great Britain was lacking in. (Doc
In the 19th century imperialism was an important part of building European empires. The four major motives for imperialism are economic, strategic, religious and political. These motives helped great empires expand their territory and brought new cultures and languages to both the colonised countries and the countries colonising them. European countries such as Britain and France would use their colonies in Africa for economic gain. They would be able to exploit the country’s natural resources and bring them back to the “mother country” to sell and use.
During the 1800’s and early 1900’s, there was many causes that led to the start of the first world war. Although many suggest that nationalism impacted the most, i think imperialism was the main cause of WW1. Everybody wants to be the biggest and to be the best and that's why these countries were thirsty for war. They were all in for getting more land and getting bigger. France and Britain had many colonies in Asia and Africa which gave the question to other nations, “why can't we have colonies too?” Having colonies was beneficial because you can have more resources and have cheap labor or enslave people which also boosted the economy.
Economic were more of a driving force because they were in need for natural resources for them to improve technology and their nation. Europeans wanted African resources like rubber and oil.They also wanted to create new markets for their goods that would lead them to great wealth for their nation. Several European industries benefited from African resources. Cotton, rubber, oil, zinc , coffee, gold, diamonds, peanuts, bananas, cocoa, sisal, ivory and gum were exported(Doc D). Out of all these resources they made lots of products and made money off of it.
During the period of imperialism in Africa all of the countries were competing for the title of being the richest and the strongest. In fact, the whole scramble for Africa was an opportunity for countries to enhance their overall economy. For example, King Leopold II of Belgium was determined to get the area of land so he can become more wealthy. France’s politicians thought that an overseas company would strengthen the country when it came to wealth, prestige, and power, so as a result they invested in land more toward the west and north-west. Britain wanted to protect their trading routes which required them to purchase land in East Africa, and they they soon discovered the rewards of the land so the were determined to obtain as much as possible.
European imperialism not only involved Africa, imperialism stretched from North America to Asia and Australia. Western Europe and the empires that existed within it, were the most advanced during the time of imperialism and colonisation and the reach of these empires was worldwide and their impacts are still seen today. Due to the comparatively late decolonisation in Africa, the effects are more prominent there than anywhere else today. This does not deduct from the fact that the effects of European imperialism cannot be seen elsewhere. Similar to Africa, colonisation allowed for infrastructure to be vastly improved and modern technology improved their lives.
European nations involved in the trading system with the wealthy nations of Asia, Africa and the New World, wanted better and more effective routes of transportations. This urge for territorial acquisitions pushed the governments to acquire new advances in shipbuilding and navigation, hence began the expeditions. The Europeans powers began to strive for control of the New World almost immediately after Christopher Columbus announced the earth earth-shattering of the discovery of the New World in 1492. During the missionary duty the Spanish and
Europe’s imperial ambition that resulted in many deaths, corrupted states, famines and genocides During approximately the 1860’s the competitive Western Nations were in desperate need of domination and therefore started the expansion of their territories overseas. On account of the fact that they finally gained the essential privileges and advantages for a “successful” colonisation, for instance steamships, weapons and quinine medicine, they decided to place their countries’ individual interests in front of the importance of several nations’ futures. In the end of the 19th century (in 1870s) more than 10% of the African territory, mostly around the coastal lines, was controlled by the power-hungry colonial powers who saw this domination