“By the prime way to do it, therefore

“By 1914, the only independent African states were Liberia and Ethiopia.” (St. John’s College University of Cambridge). The event that is referred to as The Scramble for Africa was the colonization of African territory and colonies by seven European countries. These countries include Britain, France, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Portugal and Spain. There was a competition for power between these countries and gaining territory was the prime way to do it, therefore Africa was seen as a great opportunity to do so. The British Empire utilized this to gain influence in both Africa and Europe and because of this, was able to acquire the title as one of the most powerful empires in history. Although African colonization assisted the British Empire and other European countries involved in the Scramble by providing natural resources to fuel economic development, the impact of their power was not as advantageous for the  people living in these African colonies. Despite the thirst to gain more power, Britain needed colonization to pick up the pieces that Industrialization left behind.  According to the prezi “Britain Conquers the World” by Ian Tiedeman, slaves’ production of cotton was essential to Britain during Industrialization. Based on this information, it can be presumed that when slavery was abolished, a great source of money was lost.  As evidenced by an essay written on the website for The New York public library, Brittain,  as a result of the loss of profits from slave trade due to abolition and the Industrial Revolution,  needed both natural resources and a place that could be invested in. Therefore, colonizing African territory was almost perfect because it not only gave them exactly what they needed but it made things in terms of their economic development even better than before. Nevertheless, countries like Britain who were involved in colonization  believed in a theory that says the success of certain races or social groups depends on the ‘survival of the fittest’ like in nature how animals  adapt and survive based on their characteristics. This theory is called Social Darwinism. As stated by an article on Social Darwinism from the World Geography, “Social Darwinism was tailor made for the leaders of industrialized Western states seeking justification for their control of less developed nations.” As supported by the quote this theory gave those in power an excuse for colonization, despite the underlying racism behind it.  In conclusion, colonization was necessary to solve the issues that Britain was going through after Industrialization. Furthermore, although the countries involved in colonization gained a lot from it,  European Imperialism certainly had some lasting effects on the African Colonies, one of them was Congo.  For instance, the article “After Imperialism: The Economy After Congo” from Washington State University explains, King Leopold II {king of Belgium} wanted to establish his own colony so he sent an explorer to Congo, so that he could communicate with the leaders of all the Congolian tribes and had them sign treaties. He took advantage of them and he viewed the Congolese as inferior to him. He forced them to perform labor in which they were not paid for which shouldn’t’ve been allowed, taking into consideration that slavery was abolished.  However, despite some people;s efforts to expose the king, people turned the other cheek and overlooked the Congoleses’ mistreatment. According to the same source, “Due to … the citizens of the world over looking the Congolese, the soon to be Free State of the Congo would become a third world country. Not because they did not have the ability to govern or support themselves, ..it was because they were never actually given the ability to do so.”  This is significant because it shows that there’s a possibility that Congo could’ve been more successful today, but because of Imperialism, there will always be that ‘what if’. Not only that, but Congo suffers from uneven development as well because a few people are rich and wealthy while the rest of the country is still struggling. Additionally, in an excerpt from The Black Man’s Burden by Edward Morel 1903   (which was written in response to Rudyard Kipling’s The White Man’s Burden ) found at History Wiz,  the author asserts that “Indeed … Africa has ultimately absorbed within itself every Caucasian and, for that matter, every Semitic invader, too. In hewing out for himself a fixed abode in Africa, the white man has massacred the African in heaps.” The main idea of this quote is that the white men have taken over not only their territory but the Africans themselves. They’ve lost their culture, which makes them who they are; it’s been taken away by these white men who are the invaders. This is what has made their path to success so difficult, because they are missing a piece and an experience that should be a part of them . Evidently, Congo was one of the African colonies who Imperialism greatly affected. Lastly, Kenya was another one of the african colonies that was greatly hit by the impact of colonialism notwithstanding the benefits it gave Britain, another country involved in the Scramble for Africa . Kenya now struggles with racial division, and an unjust system of rule due to the fact that they have one class who is in control of everything while the other citizens are left with no say. This is not how things used to be and all this was brought about by British colonialism. As described in an article by Washington State University titled “British Rule In Kenya”, The Portuguese were the first to settle, however they only went to Kenya for short periods of time so they could trade with the natives. When the British arrived, they had different intentions than the portuguese did and it was to take over Kenya. However, the natives weren’t aware of this and welcomed the British’s arrival. Meanwhile, the British was obtaining new information about Kenya and they were intending to exploit this information. They wanted to gain the natives’ trust and so they made it seem as if the Africans were actually benefitting from the British being there. However,  the previously stated article claims, ” In 1888 a privately financed trading company, the Imperial British East Africa Company (IBEAC) was awarded a royal charter to develop trade in Kenya.1 In this moment, the country of Kenya was no longer their own, but were lost to the British rule..”.  One central component in the British invasion of Kenya was Slavery. The natives lives had become more difficult, as they had to work for  European settlers. Nonetheless, when a decree for the abolition of slavery was passed by the British Administration, not only did the Sultan of Kenya not do anything to aid the country, but he helped the British. Due to this, the British were able to find loopholes around the decree without too much interference. After the British had obtained their power, they manipulated the Africans so they could acquire their land, which had great resources and was good for farming; this was something they needed. They were able to take the land by changing the leases of it in a way that the Africans wouldn’t have a clue what was going on. Eventually, the Kenyans were just about fed up and took a stand; they wanted their independence. When they finally achieved this independence, since the British had drilled their way of doing things into their heads, the people of Kenya ran their country exactly how the British had during that period of colonialism. Therefore, Kenya is another colony who greatly suffered from the long term effects of Imperialism.Even though the colonization of Africa benefitted the British Empire  by providing natural resources to advance economic development, the influence of their power was a disadvantage to the African colonies’ success. As mentioned earlier, the seven countries involved in the Scramble were competing for power and by acquiring African territory, their influence increased. However, this left a mark on the African colonies and Congo and Kenya are both examples of that. Although, Congo and Kenya were colonized by different European countries, imperialism left a similar effect on both countries. They were either left with no idea how to properly govern or their way of governing was influenced by the previous empire that was controlling them. Either way, an experience was taken away from them and that’s what’s making success so hard for them today. They were never given a chance to figure it out and now, while the Imperialists are enjoying the aftermath of colonization, these african colonies are suffering from it. So now it raises the question of what should be done to alter the effects of Imperialism?


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