The World And Empires By Anthony Pagden

1150 WordsNov 24, 20145 Pages
Peoples and Empires Throughout history there have been a multitude of different empires to rise up and conquer land, along with the people inhabiting that land. More often than not, these empires fell. Whether the empire was quickly abolished, or it maintained power for decades, most of them were over thrown. Anthony Pagden, who at the time of publication was a history professor at John Hopkins, wrote the book Peoples and Empires in 2003 to explain the history of the once “Great European Empires”. These empires included, but are not limited to, the French, the Spanish, the British, and the Roman Empire. One major idea of the content focuses on how these particular empires justified their conquering, not only to themselves, but also to their followers and the people who rebelled against them. Conquerors would travel to the ends of the earth in order to obtain more land which in turn is more power. However, in order to do this they had to justify their actions to the individuals occupying that land. In doing so, they fabricated what they assumed were acceptable reasons as to why an empire was more luxurious, or in other words “better”, than the systems they had in place before. The most common ideology between all of the empires was the simple idea of being “civilized” versus being “barbaric” or “savage”. Pagden thoroughly explains how the empires used this ideology and coupled it with small force to justify their actions and the overall concept of an empire: “They
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