Imperialism Essay

1104 Words 5 Pages
Imperialism was reborn in the West with the emergence of the modern nation-state and the age of exploration and discovery. It is to this modern type of empire building that the term imperialism is quite often restricted. Colonies were established not only in more or less sparsely inhabited places where there were few or no highly integrated native states (e.g., North America and Africa) but also in lands where ancient civilizations and states existed (e.g., India, Malaya, Indonesia, and the Inca lands of South America). The emigration of European settlers to people the Western Hemisphere and Africa, known as colonization , was marked by the same attitude of assumed superiority on the part of the newcomers toward the native populations that …show more content…
The eastward spread of Russia after the 16th cent. and the westward spread of the United States may also be termed imperialistic, although the United States did not actually acquire colonial possessions until the Spanish-American War. In the late 19th cent. Italy, Germany, and Japan also developed imperial ambitions; these nations, like the older colonial powers, were moved by a variety of aims, including commercial penetration, military glory, and diplomatic advantage.
Imperial nations built their empirial fortunes by plundering the world of it’s vast resources. Silver from the mines of South America, spices from Indonesian islands, Jade from ancient China, and even the trade of human beings from across Africa helped pay for the gigantic palaces, museums, theatres, cathedrals, municipal buildings, and for almost everything else that was considered “western civilization”. For centuries, European greed enriched one small continent at the expense of the rest of the planet. Throughout history, The West convinced itself that its cause was the only just one, its religions the only one that lead to God, and its economic institutions of greed, called ‘capitalism’ or a ‘free market economy,’ the only true expression of human nature.
At its best, European imperialism brought economic expansion and new standards of official administration and public health to subject countries; at its worst, it meant brutal…