Lecture Notes for Western Imperialism of LA, Africa, and Asia

Lecture Notes for Western Imperialism of LA, Africa, and Asia

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1 Lecture Notes for Western Imperialism of Latin America, Africa, and Asia Suggested Books: Adam Hochschild’s, King Leopold’s Ghost, a story of greed, terror and heroism in colonial Africa Ronald Robinson, et al Africa and the Victorians, the climax of imperialism There are several books on European explorer/traders such as Stanley and Livingstone and the Exploration of Africa in World History by Richard Worth Lawrence James’, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire (Fiction) Ernest Hemingway’s, Green Hills of Africa (Fiction) Joseph Conrad’s, Heart of Darkness (Autobiographical) Isak Dinesen’s, Out of Africa Suggested Films: Stanley and Livingstone with Spencer Tracy (1939; re-release, 1990) The Ghost and the Darkness with Michael Douglas and Val Kilmer (1998) And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself with Antonio Banderas (2003) Introduction Slide 2 In 1877 the young British Empire builder Cecil Rhodes drew up his last will and testament. He left his fortune achieved as a diamond magnate in South Africa to tow of his closest friends. He instructed them to use the inheritance to form a secret society with the aim of bringing about “the extension of British rule throughout the world, promoting and perfecting emigration from the U.K. and to encourage colonization of the whole of Africa, the continent of America and the Middle East”. This way, the balance of world power would be British in manner, behavior, practices and policies and would replace the tragic loss of the United States as an integral part of the British Empire. This process, according to Rhodes’ will, rendered wars impossible and promoted “the best interests for humanity”. While these ideas are far fetched today, for their time they serve as a graphic reminder of the world view and the character of imperial empires. Many of Rhodes’ contemporaries went into the jungles of Africa and Asia to Christianize the heathen and promote trade while keeping the peace and extracting raw materials needed or desired by wealthy European and US industrialists. Through these 19C interests, western colonization and imperialism spread across much of the non-western world during the 19 th and 20 th C. Industrial nations like Germany, France, Britain, Belgium along with Russia, Japan and the United States expanded their territories around the world keeping or making imperial peace which contributed to a
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2 boom in international trade goods. As the new century began, the ‘Western’ imprint on Asian and African societies for better or worse seemed to be a permanent feature of the political and cultural landscape (World War I disrupted this process in the Middle East). Slide 3 In the 19C, a new phase of Western expansion into Asia an Africa began. Before 1800 was summed up as exploration by ‘Christians for spices’. Now, a new relationship took shape as European nations began to view Asian and African societies as a source of industrial raw materials and as markets for Western manufactured goods. No longer were
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This note was uploaded on 04/09/2008 for the course HIST 17 taught by Professor Courney during the Summer '07 term at Saddleback.

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Lecture Notes for Western Imperialism of LA, Africa, and Asia

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