An analysis of the driving factor behind early colonialists

Between and the British government tried to improve Anglo-German relations through economic imperialism.

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Differing colonial investments[ edit ] When European colonials entered a region, they invariably brought new resources and capital management. Lacking any external threats to their sovereignty, these countries have failed to consolidate power, leading to weak or failed states.

Colonialism history

Karl Helfferich — was one of the most nationalist German bankers and as a director of the Deutsche Bank was responsible for the Baghdad Railway. These chiefs were either drawn from the existing social hierarchy or were newly minted by the colonial authority. Only in India did the British more or less consistently expand their colonial sway, and France took over Algeria and made its first encroachments in Indochina. Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica. Lenin, Collected Works. Yet it never approximated in its severity the mercantilism of the first period. Denying the precepts of Ricardo, he argued that an industrialized state could generate surplus capital which it was unprofitable to invest at home either in agriculture because of the declining profitability of marginal lands or in industry because foreign markets did not expand fast enough to absorb its products. In each period imperial arrangements closely followed contemporary practices in the parent states and owed very little to theory. This was a cycle through which the older dominions had passed and which was tested again in India, Ceylon, and elsewhere in the interwar decades.

Along with the rise of the Industrial Revolutionwhich economic historians generally trace to the s, and the continuing spread of industrialization in the empire-building countries came a shift in the strategy of trade with the colonial world.

The Conference implemented the Principle of Effective Occupation in Africa which allowed European states with even the most tenuous connection to an African region to claim dominion over its land, resources, and people.

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At the same time, economic imperialism could be used as a means to defuse political tensions. Economic theories of colonialism Theories of colonialism may be placed into four periods of time: prior to ; from to ; from to ; and from onward.

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Cleveland: World. These organizations are a melange of ethnic, cultural, local, and familial groups and they form the basis of our society. Morel believed the Belgian system that eliminated traditional, commercial markets in favor of pure exploitation was the root cause of the injustice in the Congo.

An analysis of the driving factor behind early colonialists

But in the long run many of these initial bases turned out to be steppingstones to future territorial conquests. These regimes tended to train a few of their subjects in bureaucratic management and required passive acquiescence from the remainder. Even if in some cases a strong British-German trade rivalry existed, the reaction of leading bankers and economists interested in imperial projects showed that they were not interested in going to war with one another. Especially in imperial affairs, German and British traders and bankers often cooperated quite successfully; at the same time, German banks had to compete with other German firms, while British banks had to deal with British competition. The essence of mercantilism was that it projected current metropolitan preoccupations into the colonies and assumed that dependencies existed solely to serve these particular interests. In , in a famous memorandum, Eyre A. Ultimately the nations would compete for the limited supply of colonies, and the resulting wars for imperial redivision would inaugurate the socialist revolution and the end of capitalism. When Leo von Caprivi became Chancellor in , the Berlin government returned to a strictly anti-imperialist policy. For the French colonies, this meant the enforcement of the French penal code, the right to send a representative to parliament , and imposition of tariff laws as a form of economic assimilation. Schuyler, Robert L. The French annexation had direct repercussions for the European system; fearing further French aggressions, the Italian government joined the German-Austrian-Hungarian military defensive alliance. This starting point eliminates all controversy as to whether one colonial system or policy is better than another by blanket condemnation of all, leaving immediate independence as the only way out. But in addition to such commercial profits, Spain and Portugal made substantial fiscal profits from their American colonies by transferring surplus revenue to the metropolitan exchequer.

However, they differ greatly in the way in which they have envisaged their colonial mission. The primary fact about colonialism as a historical phenomenon is that precast theories seldom dictated or even strongly influenced practice.

However, economic imperialism followed its own rules, which in some cases fit with the respective national political interests but did not necessarily have to.


The reasons for the acceleration of European expansion during the s are still being debated, but this article concentrates on the diplomatic processes and consequences of imperial expansion. Roberts, Stephen H. London: King. The first theory applied only to colonies of white settlement in North America , South Africa, and Australasia and concerned only the British. New York: Macmillan; Cambridge Univ. Hancock, William K. This was a cycle through which the older dominions had passed and which was tested again in India, Ceylon, and elsewhere in the interwar decades. Such divisions are arbitrary, but they provide a primitive frame-work for analysis. Consequently, the British tried to minimize existing imperial tensions with Russia. However, this treaty caused public protest in Germany and led to the foundation of the Pan-German League Alldeutscher Verband , which later became a small but very influential pro-colonial and hyper-nationalist pressure group. Only in India did the British more or less consistently expand their colonial sway, and France took over Algeria and made its first encroachments in Indochina. The Austro-Italian antagonism led to other imperial conflicts that overshadowed the harmony of the so-called Concert of Europe before

Once the scramble for China ended, this alliance was directed against Russia and its ambitions in China and Korea.

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Western colonialism