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European Colonization On Africa Essay

Colonialism in Africa Essay example

2840 WordsNov 16th, 201212 Pages


How does the legacy of colonialism affect contemporary African international relations?

If questioned today about Africa in general the first reactions I would have are poor governance, poverty, conflict, economic instability and hunger. These are the major characteristics that dominate most of the states within the continent as a whole. The question would be has it always been this way? Different debates and differences have been focused on the colonial legacy for post-colonial Africa and the nature of colonialism. Various characterizations and conceptions tend to differ considerably among the international relations and African scholars.

Between 1800 and 1900, majority of the European powers colonized…show more content…

Section one will focus on the colonial conquest in Africa. Section two will look at the operation of colonial legacy with emphasis on the political and economic practice. Lastly, the third section will look at the impacts of the colonial legacy on the African continent.


The term colonialism developed a more precise meaning during the late nineteenth century. This in Europe was a period of industrialization. There was a hunt for fresh market, raw materials and also new field for investment by the European factories in Africa. Politics and economic inspiration as a result took a huge role in the colonization of Africa. After the Second World War, most of the developed European and American countries turned to tropical African states in order to acquire industrial raw materials to rebuild their economies. The West defended in their capture of alien terrains for the purpose of exploiting the natural resources for instance gold: a situation that left the exploited colonies with negative impacts[2]. Majority of the lives of the African people and their societies were affected causing transformations and interruptions as a result of the policies implicated by these colonial masters during.

Nationalism in the Western states during this period was identified with pride in one’s nation bringing about stiff competition within the European nations. In addition it brought about the formation of nation-states within the European

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The Colonization of Africa: 1880 to 1914 Essay example

895 Words4 Pages

The Scramble for Africa took place during the period of time around 1880 until 1914. During this time Africa found itself being split up and divided amongst several European countries. In essence Africa was like a fresh baked pie and everyone wanted a slice. Several factors were the cause of this major land grab being Nationalism, Imperialism and to say the least pure greed! The British were the more dominant entity in the scramble and their main interests in the beginning were to acquire and protect sea routes to India. As a result of the congress of Vienna they acquired the area of South Africa known as the cape colony. Soon after, Gold and Diamond were found north of this area and this steered their interests northward. This…show more content…

Spain, Portugal, Belgium, and Italy were also involved in the scramble and in the end there was only one Large area that remained independent which was Ethiopia, and a few very small areas. But for the most part, Europe swallowed up the continent. The beginning of this imperialism started with king Leopold of Belgium. For several years he had been secretly sending his representatives to the Congo region to sign treaties and purchase land from the local tribes, when it finally came to light what he was doing, he had already acquired 900,000 acres, later known as The Belgian Congo. This land was not for his country, but for his own personal use. Leopold cared nothing about the land or the native people, his goal was to exploit the land and people at all cost and that is exactly what he did. Millions of native Africans were forced into slave labor for Leopold’s needs and the land was stripped of all its natural recourses. The slaves were treated horribly and many millions were slaughtered or died from the horrific conditions forced upon them. Although the exact number is not known it is estimated to be in the tens of millions. King Leopold’s actions were appalling, even to his own people and as a result he was removed from the throne and the land was annexed by Belgium. Another result was several countries taking notice of Leo’s exploits, and the “Scramble for Africa” Began. Britain as I mentioned before was

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