Presentation on theme: "Effects of Imperialism. Negative Loss of Independence and Self-Government."— Presentation transcript:
Effects of Imperialism
Loss of Independence and Self-Government
Negative Effects of Imperialism Africans lost their land and independence. African peoples lost the power to govern their own lives. None of them were included in the new colonial governments set up by the Europeans. African people already had laws and traditions for maintaining order and did not need European interference. The colonial governments did not receive money from their mother country, so they taxed the Africans heavily. Africans were indirectly forced to work for the Europeans because those taxes had to be paid in European currency. This resulted in more and more Africans being forced to work for the Europeans.
Negative Effects of Imperialism Loss of Independence: Under the brutal control of King Leopold, the Congolese kept rebelling. There were at least 12 major rebellions and many smaller ones. The Congolese would be massacred, but kept fighting. One of the tribal leaders said: “If we let the white men into this country, they will soon make an end of us.” Many of the natives realized what would happen when they lost their independence to the Europeans.
Loss of Culture and Identity
Negative Effects of Imperialism Loss of Culture and Identity: There was a breakdown of traditional culture as they were forced to Westernize. African culture and heritage were replaced by European culture and traditions. Many Africans were not included in society, because they did not speak the European languages. Indigenous peoples were divided according to whether they followed European customs or not. The African continent was divided up, but tribal, ethnic groups, and cultural boundaries were not considered. This has led to the multiple tribal conflicts in Africa today as seen with the genocides and civil wars. A new set of values and beliefs were created blending European and native traditions as seen with Christianity. African culture did not grow or prosper. There were arguments over which religion they should follow. The missionaries destroyed the African cultures. Due to being forced to move for work, the men left their families in the villages to move to the cities or towns. This led to a destruction of traditional village life, the decline of villages chiefs, and a loss of a sense of family. Immigrant laborers were brought from Asia to Africa to work and this led to tensions between the African workers and the immigrant workers. An example of this was in South Africa where there was a large Indian population.
Negative Effects of Imperialism Economic: Africans were used as cheap labor and abused as seen in the Congo. Most of the Africans were employed in difficult manual labor and for very low wages. The Africans were forced to work the European farms and mines. The working conditions were horrible, involved corporal punishment, and low wages. Wagers were partially given in cash and as food rations. African resources were not used to benefit the Africans, as their natural resources were exploited and depleted and at the expanse of their environment. The profits went entirely to the European economies from those natural resources and none of it went to the natives. Indigenous economies were replaced by a market economy following the example of the Europeans with only European money used. The Europeans imposed severe taxes on the Africans that had to be paid in European money which forced them to work for the Europeans in the poor jobs.
Negative Effects of Imperialism Economic: Ndansi Kumalo, an African, said, “We were treated like slaves… the treatment we received was intolerable. We said, ‘It is no good living under such conditions; death would be better—let us fight’” King Leopold II of Belgium justified brutality against the Africans by saying, “the natives hardly knew how to get their daily food” Cecil Rhodes wrote in his will in 1877 that African Americans were “the most despicable specimens of human beings.”
Negative Effects of Imperialism Economic: The Europeans were quick to tax the Africans on anything they could. Kumalo wrote: “The government said, ‘You must contribute more; you must pay £1.’ We did so. Then those who took more than one wife were taxed… that is not all. We are also taxed for our dogs… then we were told we were living on private land; the owners wanted rent in addition to the government tax…” Kumalo said, “If we do raise anything, it is never our own: all, or most of it, goes back in taxation”
Negative Effects of Imperialism Economic: The colonial governments took much of the land away from the Africans for personal and commercial use for mining and large farms. The Europeans took the best land for themselves. This was seen in the actions of Belgium and Britain in Central, East, and South Africa. The Europeans changed the economic structure of African society. They introduced commercial or cash crops to meet their industrial demands of the home countries. So cocoa, coffee, tea, and cotton were produced on a large scale. The Africans were no longer producing food to meet their basic needs. Africans were not allowed to trade with any other country then their European power.
Negative Effects of Imperialism Economic: Europeans take land, cattle, and food Africans acquired Kumalo said, “All the best land has been taken by the white people. We get hardly any price for our cattle; we find it hard to meet our money obligations. If we have crops to spare, we get very little for them… When we have plenty of grain the prices are very low, but the moment we are short of grain and we have to buy from Europeans at once the price is high”
War and Genocide
Negative Effects of Imperialism War and Genocide: British Matabele War: Cecil Rhodes gained control of the mineral mines in Matabeleland and with the help of his South Africa Company, exploited the mineral wealth in the area, sparking the rebellion of the Matabeles against the British. The British Matabele War ended with Britain easily slaughtering thousands of Africans with the help of the machine guns. Civil War in Africa: After the Europeans relinquished control, civil war broke out all over Africa; some of these civil wars are still going on today. In January, representatives at the Pan Africanist Congress said that, "the problems which were being blamed on [President Robert] Mugabe [of Zimbabwe] were created by British colonialism, whose agent Cecil Rhodes used armed force to acquire land for settlers." In Zimbabwe, formerly called Rhodesia, Mugabe called his enemies of all races "colonialists," despite that Rhodesia was renamed Zimbabwe in 1980
Negative Effects of Imperialism War and Genocide: Edmund Morel, upon the discovery of King Leopold II’s system of forced labor and genocide in the Congo wrote: “It must be bad enough to stumble upon a murder. I have stumbled upon a secret society of murderers with a King for a crony.”
Belgian soldiers enforcing rubber sap quotas
Leopold’s Abuse of the Congo Agents ‘encouraged’ young men to work by holding their wives and children captive until each man’s quota was met. Many who resisted were killed on the spot. Others were beaten with whips made from dried hippo hide with sharp edges. 20 lashes resulted in unconsciousness 100 lashes resulted in death.
The chicotte, a particularly vicious type of whip made from rhinoceros hide. " The station chief selects the victims....Trembling, haggard, they lie face down on the ground...two of their companions, sometimes four, seize them by the feet and hands, and remove their cotton drawers....Each time that the torturer lifts up the chicotte, a reddish stripe appears on the skin of the pitiful victims, who, however firmly held, gasp in frightful contortions....At the first blows the unhappy victims let out horrible cries which soon become faint groans....In a refinement of evil, some officers, and I've witnessed this, demand that when the sufferer gets up, panting, he must graciously give the military salute.” -- Stanislas Lefranc, Belgian prosecutor
Leopold’s Abuse of the Congo Revolt broke out. Leopold sent troops into villages to exterminate the young men. To make sure bullets weren’t wasted, soldiers were expected to return with the severed right hands of those they killed. Soldiers who couldn’t meet quotas or spent bullets hunting would cut hands off of living women and children. Between stimated 8-10 million people died due to murder, mistreatment and starvation. Between an estimated 8-10 million people died due to murder, mistreatment and starvation.
Two victims (l.) who lost their hands, one because his wrists were tied too tightly, the other because company militia cut it off to claim him as killed and get a reward. Below, a father looks at the severed hand and foot of his daughter Belgian Congo
Primary Source: Roger Casement, Report from the Congo Basin in 1903 Here Nkwabali took up the tale from Moyo, the Bangongo chief: ‘We said to the white men, We are not enough people now to do what you want us. Our country has not many people in it and we are dying fast. We are killed by the work you make us do, but the stoppage of our plantations, and the breaking up of our homes.’”
"I have just returned from a journey inland to the village of Insongo Mboyo. The abject misery and utter abandon is positively indescribable. I was so moved, Your Excellency, by the people's stories that I took the liberty of promising them that in future you will only kill them for crimes they commit.“ John Harris (Missionary) Kevin P. Dincher23
Positive Effects of Imperialism Health: Improved sanitation Introduced modern medicine that led to less deaths Life spans increased
Positive Effects of Imperialism Education: Schools were set up by the Europeans to educate them; though they taught the message that the European ways were best. Literacy increased, because more Africans went to school and learned to read and write. Africans could communicate through a common language now like English, because before there were hundreds of different languages and dialects that isolated them by tribes. The formal education broadened the African outlook. This backfired on the Europeans, because a group of educated Africans emerged. They understood democracy. And they condemned imperialism They founded nationalist groups to push for self-rule. And by the end of the 20 th century, the Africans won their political independence from European rule.
Positive Effects of Imperialism Education: Ndansi Kumalo, an African warrior in the British Matabele War said “the Government has arranged for education and through that, when our children grow up, they may rise in status” Kumalo said, “they brought us European implements—plows; we can buy European clothes, which are an advance”
Positive Effects of Imperialism Political: There was a uniform legal code. Laws not longer varied from tribe to tribe. Intergenerational and intertribal wars were eliminated by the military might of the Europeans. The European governments had the military resources to maintain law and order peacefully. Africans worked as the local police force.
Positive Effects of Imperialism Improved Infrastructure: Introduction of modern technology from the Industrial Revolution that Africa had not experienced yet. Modern roads Railroads Telegraphs Telephones Electricity Water and sewage pipes
Positive Effects of Imperialism Religion: The introduction of Christianity promoted literacy and health care through the work of the missionaries. Created a basis for all Africans to come together to assist each other following the examples from the Old and New Testaments. Christianity made African spirituality simpler in regards to life, death, and salvation. There was no need for sacrifices and rituals which has been traditionally required.