19th Century European Imperialism Data Based Essay; Identify And Explain The Political, Economic, And Social Causes Of European Imperialism In The 19th Century

406 words - 2 pages

Imperialism, the period of powerful countries conquering and dominating less-developed countries (mainly pertaining to European nations), reached its all-time high from 1870 to 1920. This is due to the economic, political, and social factors of the time. Ranging from feelings of nationalism to the need for more cheap labor, European powers dominated the world, oppressing whomever they needed to.The economic cause of imperialism is mostly contributed to the need to pull ahead of other nations in the technological field. In Document one, "Imperialism and World Politics," Parker T. Moon argues that above political leaders, economic powerhouses were most interested in imperialism because of the need for raw materials. He continues to discuss the urgency of European companies to invest in the colonies in order to make new profit. Then, in Document two, Senator A. J. Beveridge debates how it is the American fate to spread to other countries, for we have over-produced our own soil. In doing this, America will rise as the prominent economic power in the world.The political cause of imperialism is the rapid increase in nationalism during this period of time. Documents three and eight discuss how powerful countries will, or possibly already have, dominate the weaker ones, leaving them to the imperialists' mercy. Document seven shows how the Americans believed that imperialism was crucial in the culturalization of less-developed countries. Then, the map of imperialism in Africa geographically shows how the Western forces dominated the entire continent, save a few small countries, in order too keep up in the political frenzy for colonies.The social cause of imperialism is the underlying feelings of white supremacy over the other ethnicities of the world. Documents four and six express Caucasian superiority and how other races are meant to only serve the white man, not to ever be his equal. Document five suggests that the social "survival of the fittest" is the scientific justification for imperialism. All three documents, nevertheless, look down upon any and all races that are not remotely related to the Anglo-Saxon race.Essay adapted from the following source: Noonan, Teresa C., "New Imperialism: Cuases." Document-Based Assessment Activities for Global History Classes. Portland, Maine: J. Weston Walch, 1999.


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