British Empire: What is Imperialism? Essay

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Imperialism is defined as relationships that are unequal between two humans or territories. This is usually based on concepts of authority and the articulation of dominance over a particular territory. It comprises of the extension of control and regulation of one state over another nation. The British has been known to be a colonial power that has always practiced dominance over many states particularly in Africa. The British Empire is seen as one of the largest empires in both the past and current times. This is because it has many African and Asian colonies compared to the rest of the Empires. The empire was known to use force to subdue the states that it ended to subdue. The colonial power is seen to force its colonies to adopt certain …show more content…
Collectively this reasons made the British start a war when the Chinese made the importation of opium illegal and possessed all British shipments of opium.Opium was popular in china for its medicinal effects. It was used among the population to treat infirmities. However, in the seventeenth and the early eighteenth century the use of opium increased greatly. Opium was now used as a recreational drug among the Chinese population of all classes (Polachek, 116). The British took advantage of the popularity of the drug and exported large quantities of the drug to the country, which was traded for Chinese tea and other products made from the drug .
The increase in the use of opium created a concern among the Chinese government. The first concern was the damage experienced to the health of the citizens particularly the capacity of work of the people consuming the drug. The second concern was the economic damage brought about by the opium trade. The Chinese government was concerned of the huge amounts of the silver that was being paid to foreign countries and consequently leaving china. The price of silver was continuously increasing while the price of copper remained constant . “The Chinese were convinced that the decline in the value of copper cash was due to the large amount of silver that was been paid to opium smugglers” (Waley 1958, p.25).This caused the tax payments to become hard for the citizens to pay since tax was paid
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