Essay on Imperialism

1350 Words6 Pages
Imperialism is often excused as a way of liberating people from tyrannical rule or by introducing the policies of a “better” way of life. It is based on the ground of a variety of causes running the gamut of economic pressures, greed, security, power, prestige, religion, and many other effective measures that can be taken given the circumstances. Arguments about the roots and virtue of imperialism can be put into four basic groups. The first is whether or not imperialism is economically beneficial. The second relates to the social aspect of imperialism and the natural desire to rule others. The third is protection and security, building up military powers around the world in order to help the main country when trouble erupts. Finally, the…show more content…
Britain had feared that they would be cut off and India would be taken from them. Keeping India was essential to Britain's survival as an empire, without which they would be just another European nation. To solve this problem, Britain gained control of the Suez Canal, then eventually the entirety of Egypt.
Another country needed in order to protect India was South Africa. Its port at Cape Town was an essential stop for all people en route to India. When gold and diamonds were later discovered in other parts of South Africa, Britain fought and annexed all of South Africa. At this time, neither Germany nor Italy was unified and France was busy fighting with Prussia. The European powers really had no interest in external affairs for the time. 1871 changed everything. Germany and Italy were unified and France had just lost the Alsace-Lorraine to the Germans.
The French were the first to begin the annexation of Africa, mostly because they wanted to restore their lost sense of national pride. Because both Germany and France went for Africa, the English were suddenly faced with the fear of competition. An economic slump in Europe in the 1880s caused markets to become even scarcer than they were to begin with. In a futile attempt to right themselves as an empire, Britain began taking over land in Africa. After all, land in Africa was quite cheap. It was slightly afterwards that all the European powers realized what they had bought into, and had to face the fact

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