Historical Literature and Dehumanization

2175 Words9 Pages
Introduction - Historical literature is filled with examples of pre- and post-colonialist paradigms. Within each of these models, however, there is a certain part of a larger story that can only be told in the larger view of the historical process. One of the grand themes that help us wade through that process is that of the dehumanization of the individual. For whatever psychotically reasons, humans seem to have the need to change others into less than human in order to subjugate them economically, intellectually, or culturally. We might even think of the process of imperialism as practiced by the European powers as dehumanization of culture and society; begun at the micro level and then evolving into the macro. However, one cannot lay the blame for dehumanization and political subjugation solely at the feet of European powers. China, known as the "sleeping giant," has transformed itself from a rural, pre-industrial society to an economic and political powerhouse in just a few decades. Since 1949, through the Great Patriotic Revolution led by Mao Tse-Tung, China has literally moved from a feudal economic system to one of the world's fastest growing economies in the global environment. How did China accomplish this herculean task? It was through political will, certainly, but it was also through subjugation, terror, coercion and the rampant purging, imprisonment and murder of millions of people. Imperialism in Context - Starting with the late 16th century, the major
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