The New Imperialism (1869-1914) Chapter 27 Outline

I. The New Imperialism: Motives and Methods A. Political Motives -Powers of the 19th century realized the great political importance of colonization and the need to protect their overseas assets. Countries like Great Britain, France, Portugal, and Belgium embraced the ideas of imperialism and colonized areas not only to gain resources, but also to show political and military strength around the world. They would also settle areas around their vital colonies in order to protect their important colonies. Soon these countries realized that it was easier to conquer the local populations instead of trying to make peace with them, changing the way the settled areas. Colonial officials seized land just so that rivals could not use the land, gaining more land for their home country yet forcing the indigenous population away, and telling their government afterward. B. Cultural Motivations -Not only was there a new renewal of the Christian mission effort, but also a need to spread “civilization” to “barbaric” areas of the world. They felt the need to teach the indigenous peoples of the places they settled proper social standards of hygiene, education, marriage, etc. -Many of the people who served as missionaries were women who served as nurses and teachers; they joined these mission societies hoping to gain more authority and autonomy than they could get at home. These women helped to soften the harsh colonial rule by calling attention to important issues like maternity. -Many missionaries and colonial expeditions from Europe and America felt technologically and culturally superior to the indigenous population. Some people thought that these people had to be educated before they could be as good as the “civilized” people. Others were extreme racist and believed that the natives were permanently inferior to them. They believed that the white people were at the top of the biological pyramid with the native people always at the bottom. -At first imperialism only attracted small groups of clergy and businessmen, but it slowly gained support from young men eager to become the predecessors to the Spanish conquistadors. At first there was very little popular support for imperialism in the government or in the general population. But slowly as more and more victories overseas piled up, people and government officials became more and more willing to support these expeditions. Parliaments and government officials began to sponsor these groups as they settled other regions. In the US, the main concern was pushing out west into the frontier country. By the 1890s though, more attention was on expanding beyond the continent’s borders. C. Economic Motives -Because of the Industrial revolution, demand for raw materials was at an all time high. Copper was needed for wire, coal for fuel, tin for cans, steel for structures, and or course gold and silver. Demands for certain crops were high too; business owners needed rubber, tobacco, cotton, sugar, coffee, and tea to sell and use in the new industrial markets. -The governments of these countries were able to justify their need to send troops and use force to secure resources with the economic depression in the 1870s and 80s. They stated that they needed to protect their sources of revenue and needed to protect their merchants from competition overseas. The

businessmen needed to be able to find a way to make profit outside their countries as opportunities began to fade in their homeland. They looked towards mines and plantations in Asia, India, and other similar places to make a profit. This was and extremely risky move, so they looked for government backing in their investments. D. The Tools of the Imperialists -The industrial revolution gave Europeans for the first time, all of the necessary tools needed to build their Imperialistic empires. The industrial revolution allowed for war supplies to be made faster and more efficiently than non-developed countries and helped to spur the economy to great heights. -New innovations like the steam-powered boat allowed the Europeans to remain in control of the oceans, as they had been since the 1500s. The regular steamships with efficient engines, along with the Suez Canal gave Europe incredible mobility throughout the Indian ocean and made sending supplies and troops much more efficient than anything that the Asians or Africans could match. Submarine cables also gave Europe an advantage when it came to communication. -Europe had been using gunboats to help then penetrate further and further inland into countries like China and Africa, but natural obstacles such as malaria had prevented their ground forces from being effective. In 1854 a British doctor discovered a drug that could prevent malaria from infecting people who were vulnerable to the disease (like most Europeans). This allowed merchants, missionaries, and ground troops to move into Africa. -Before the 1860s and 70s, the Europeans and Africans used the same smoothbore muskets due to the large quantities that had been traded over the past centuries. In the late 19th century though, Europe began producing and using much deadlier weaponry. Europeans developed breech-loading and repeating rifles, allowing them to shoot faster, more accurately, and with greater precision. The innovation of smokeless powder allowed the riflemen to shoot without revealing his position and did not foul the guns. The advent of the machine gun also appeared in the late 19th century. These new deadly weapons made any battles with the Africans and Indians a very one-sided battle. The indigenous population was stuck using old inaccurate, single shot rifles while the Europeans could shoot quickly, and with deadly accuracy. Needless to say the stunned local population often found themselves facing defeat within a short time. E. Colonial Agents and Administration -The colonial officials who took over the new territories conquered by their nation’s armies used a system of colonialism to rule the county. Colonialism is administrating and exploiting colonies for the benefit of the home country. The governments of the home country expected colonial officials to do this, covering all costs and hopefully benefiting the home country. By applying the new industrial and scientific ideas being used in their home countries to these colonies, they were able to transform these colonies into a workplace that would return profit to the home country. -In the early stages of Imperialism, the colonial government consisted of a governor, his staff, and some troops to help keep the peace. The colonies could not operate without the cooperation of the local elites because there were not enough officials to rule over the entire colonial area. -Women were brought into the picture after a colonial government was established and the officers and governor brought their wives to live with them.

There was increasing racial segregation because of this and women were often in command of several foreign servants. II. The Scramble for Africa A. Egypt -Ironically it was Egypt’s quest to become more powerful and free itself form the Ottoman Turk’s rule that made it susceptible to the European Imperialization. During the 1800s the Egyptians undertook large public works projects, military training, and a large transportation network. These made Egypt incur large amounts of debt because of all the money borrowed from European banks. Because of increasing pressure from the banks to pay back the loans, the Egyptians sold their shares of the Suez Canal and appointed four British commissioners of debt. When the Ottomans started to threaten the Suez Canal, a vital route for the Europeans, the British immediately sent troops down to diffuse the situation. Originally they were only going to stay for 2 years, but they ended up staying for over 70. B. Western and Equatorial Africa -In the 1800s while Britain was taking over Egypt, the French were expanding into West Africa. They had already taken Senegal and they were planning to build a railroad up the river to allow merchants to penetrate further inland. Because of a disagreement over who had territorial rights over equatorial Africa, the Berlin Conference was held. This conference effectively split up Africa into separate pieces and helped to calm any fighting between the major powers, because trade was a vital part of Africa. This effective cooperation took years to establish. -Because of the flourishing West African trade, foreign merchants were able to use the existing trade networks to make a profit. They used private companies that forced Africans to grow cash crops and carry them to rivers for shipment. C. Southern Africa -Southern Africa had been a long coveted area because of its lush pastures, farmland, and rich mineral deposits. When diamonds at Kimberly were found in 1868, thousands of European prospectors swarmed the area. This and the annexing of Kimberly angered local tribes like the Zulu and created military tension between them and the Europeans. Despite their strong nationalism and pride, the Europeans defeated them in 1879. Relations between the Africans and the British were soon stressed to the max when gold was discovered and the resulting gold rush caused the Europeans to outnumber the Africans. -Cecil Rhodes was one of the prospectors who made millions in Kimberly. He encouraged the British South African Company to into Central Africa. They did so and Cecil made two colonies: Southern and Northern Rhodesia. The native people living there resisted at first but the European military technology soon defeated them. The 1913 South African Natives Land Act forced all the local peoples onto reservations, creating segregation and oppression throughout South Africa D. Political and Social Consequences -When Europe began to colonize Africa, it contained many different kinds of society. Some countries lived with a well-developed economy dominated by commercial towns and the merchant class aristocracies, while others lived in small agricultural villages with no outside rule or government. There were even remote areas of hunters-gathers and pastoral nomads. -Some of these societies welcomed the Europeans as allies against local enemies. They would seek government jobs and send their kids to missionary schools once colonial rule was established in return for protection, clinics, and

roads. Other cultures, especially those with a warrior or pastoral background were not as accepting. Tribes like the Zulu and Ndebele fought fiercely against the German invaders in the 1900s losing over 2/3 when they finally gave in. Other tribes with strong roots in Islam led jihads against the Europeans. They were ineffective however and they were all defeated. The only known successful resistance to the European colonization was with the Ethiopians in 1889. Ethiopia was under the rule of an emperor named Menelik who was smart enough to buy new and modern weapons when European expansion started. The Ethiopian military training and tactics were superior to those of the Italians who tried to conquer them, ending in a surprising Ethiopian victory. -Some countries in response to growing European dominance, tried to ignore them and continue living their lives as they had been. They found this becoming harder and harder to do though as the colonial rule disrupted the commercial, economic, and social aspects of the colony. -New taxes on seized land put an especially large burden on the African farmers and herders who needed land. In other places European rulers seized the land and gave it to private European landowners, forcing the indigenous people onto reserves. The tax forced on upon the Africans was usually so harsh that few of the Africans could maintain a living on it. European jobs did not offer high enough wages to be attractive to Africans, but it was the only way that the indigenous people could pay these harsh taxes. These taxes were often counter productive and forced African people to move away. E. Cultural Response -Most Europeans came in contact with missionaries, and these missionaries taught them things like reading, writing, and arithmetic. Boys were taught practical skills like carpentry and blacksmithing while girls learned things like cooking, cleaning, and childcare. -In addition to practical skills, missionaries taught western ideas and principals of society and justice. They taught Christian morals and values which the Africans found clashed with colonial reality. They started using their new Christian values they learned to criticize and critique colonialism and New Imperialism. Eventually the Africans took over the teaching role and used their position of authority to further criticize the Imperialism. -Islam also spread out during this time period. Imperialism helped to spread Islam though the expansion of cites and towns and letting Muslims settle in previously unsettled areas. III. Asia and Western Dominance A. Central Asia -When Genghis Khan was leading the steppe people, he could have easily taken over Russia and its people. This trend continued on for several years until Russia acquired modern weapons. From 1865 to 1876 the Russians used this modern weaponry to make advances into Central Asia. The nomadic population resisted fiercely by they starved by the end of the 1800s and their lands were fenced off and given to the Russian farmers. -South of these Steppes the Qing guarded the deserts and oasis cites of Samarkand and Tashkent where the trade routes ran between the Middle East and Asia. However the decline of the Qing meant that the Russians could now conquer this land and its Muslim populations. The Russians were able to grow thousands of acres of cotton on this land and built railroads, although they did not try to change the culture or customs of the local peoples.

B. Southeast Asia and Indonesia -The areas of Burma, Malaya, Indochina, and northern Sumatra were all independent kingdoms in the early 1800s, and conquered in the early 1900d. All of the areas had favorable growing conditions like fertile soil, and good climate, and developed agriculture. The Imperialism introduced Chinese and Indian labors for the new agricultural plantations as well as new crops. They were able to increase crop turnout and since they were able to provide a steady supply of food, the population sharply grew. -The missionaries tried to spread Christianity into these new areas, but they were unable to because of the local unwillingness to convert. Islam however, thrived in this region and was able to spread successfully because people did not feel as though it were being forced upon them. C. Hawaii and the Philippines -By the end of the nineteenth century the US economy realized that they needed to export manufactured goods because they could not expand their own markets any farther. The political and social mood in America was that of expansion and the Hawaiian Islands, controlled by the American settlers who originally settled there in 1893 were annexed into the US in 1898 to help fed the expansion fever. -In the Philippines a man named Emilio Aguinaldo led a revolt against their Spanish conquerors and declared the Philippines a republic in 1898. Unfortunately right after this the United States defeated Spain in war and bought the Philippines from the Spanish. The next year Aguinaldo once again rose up and revolted against America and its occupation in the Philippines. The United States quashed the rebellion and tried to calm the public by introducing public works and projects that would further the Philippines economy. IV. Imperialism in Latin America A. Railroads and the Imperialism of Free Trade -Latin America’s rich resources made it perfect for colonization and the only thing it needed was a way to open up its interior to new development. The railroad would prove to be the answer to the problem. European and American entrepreneurs, as well as foreign banks helped to financed and built large railroad systems in order to exploit Latin America and its abundance of mineral and agricultural resources. Local elites encouraged this process because it would help modernize their country and spread wealth to them. B. American Expansion and the Spanish American War -Despite the fact that the Americans and Europeans were using their wealth to penetrate Latin America, they avoided open warfare and territorial conquest. The Europeans avoided this for four main reasons: they were overextended in Asia and Africa, there was no local resistance, and the US claimed to defend the entire West from European intervention. -The US engaged in a short war with Spain and ended up winning the Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Special offer for students: Only $4.99/month.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Cancel anytime.