European Imperialism : The New World And The Cape Of Good Hope Passage

1972 Words Mar 9th, 2015 8 Pages
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European Imperialism
Imperialism is a political development in which one nation or power subjugates another in direct or indirect ways, suppressing its political sovereignty and integrating its economy into the conqueror’s. Colonialism is the formalization of this process (Walter, 2008, pp. 340-349). Although generally thought to be a thing of the past, imperialism and colonialism – especially “liberal imperialism” – still exist and are very influential in world affairs today (Cox, 2013). This paper will examine the phenomenon of European imperialism of the last five centuries, its causes, tactics, goals, progression, opposition and its state and consequences today. It concludes that European imperialism is still a significant reality of global affairs and it will continue to have far-reaching effects far into the distant future.
European imperialism began with the discovery of the New World and the Cape of Good Hope passage to Asia at the end of the 15th century. In 1776 Adam Smith had rightly called them “the two greatest and most important events recorded in the history of mankind” that “open[ed] up a new and inexhaustible market” (Chomsky, 1993, p. 4). He further added that
“What benefits, or what misfortunes to mankind may hereafter result from those great events, no human wisdom can foresee… the savage injustice of the Europeans rendered an event, which ought to have been beneficial to all, ruinous and destructive to…
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