Loading...

HIST202: History of Europe, 1800 to the Present

Unit 5: Europe and the World   During the latter half of the nineteenth century, European powers (as well as Japan) held unprecedented colonial control over regions in Africa, China, and India.  Known as “New Imperialism,” this era was unlike other periods of international competition in that empire-building in the latter part of the 19th century monopolized all aspects of European political, economic, and social life.

In this unit, we will see that colonization in the late 1800s was driven by several factors.  First, advancements in industry—electricity, mass-produced steel, petro-chemicals—helped fuel imperial pursuits.  Second, population pressure at home caused many Europeans to migrate to new imperial outposts.  Lastly, nationalism and increased competition among European states stimulated colonial expansion.  In Africa, for example, Britain, France, Germany, and Italy “scrambled” for colonial control.

Unit 5 Time Advisory
This unit will take you 7.5 hours to complete.

☐    Subunit 5.1: 1.5 hours

☐    Subunit 5.2: 4 hours

☐    Subunit 5.3: 2 hours

Unit5 Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this unit, the student will be able to:

  • Analyze the meaning of the term “New Imperialism.”
  • Assess how European imperialism affected the states and peoples of Asia and Africa, in the 19th century.
  • Trace the lasting social, economic, and political consequences of European imperialism in these continents.

5.1 Industrialization and the World Economy   - Reading: HistoryDoctor.net: Dr. Larry E. Gates’s “Industrialization and the World Economy” Link: HistoryDoctor.net: Dr. Larry E. Gates, Jr.’s “Industrialization and the World Economy” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Please read the entire webpage, which presents expansion—particularly in Egypt and the Far East—as a byproduct of the industrial era.  Please note that this reading covers topics outlined in subunits 5.1.1-5.1.3.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.1.1 Impact of Industrialization   5.1.2 The Opening of China and Japan   - Reading: Fordham University’s Modern History Sourcebook: Paul Halsall’s version of Commissioner Lin’s “Letter to Queen Victoria, 1839” Link:  Fordham University’s Modern History Sourcebook:Paul Halsall’s version of Commissioner Lin’s “Letter to Queen Victoria, 1839” (HTML)
 
Instructions:  Please read the entire webpage linked above.  In this text, the Chinese imperial commissioner indicts the opium trade, which was in large part fueled by British merchants who produced opium in India and then sold it in Chinese cities.  Lin calls on Queen Victoria herself to acknowledge the immoral nature of the opium traffic and requests that she curtail it.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.1.3 Europeans in Egypt   - Reading: Fordham University’s Modern History Sourcebook: Paul Halsall’s version of The Earl of Cromer’s “Why Britain Acquired Egypt in 1882” Link: Fordham University’s Modern History Sourcebook:Paul Halsall’s version of The Earl of Cromer’s “Why Britain Acquired Egypt in 1882” (HTML)
 
Instructions:  Please read the entire webpage.  In this 1908 text, the first British viceroy of Egypt explains the logic behind Britain’s occupation of Egypt.  Lord Cromer essentially asserts the necessity of British paternalistic rule in that country; he suggests that Egypt might have become an arena of civil war if Britain had not intervened.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.2 European Migration and Imperialism   - Lecture: Yale University: Dr. John Merriman’s “Lecture 15: Imperialists and Boy Scouts” Link: Yale University: Dr. John Merriman’s “Lecture 15: Imperialists and Boy Scouts” (YouTube)
 
Also available in:
HTML, Adobe Flash, Mp3 or QuickTime
iTunes U

 
Instructions:  Please watch the entire 50-minute lecture linked above.  This video lecture will help you to understand the main features of the “New Imperialism”: religious proselytizing, profit, and European imperial competition. 
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: HistoryDoctor.net: Dr. Larry E. Gates, Jr.’s “European Migration and Imperialism” Link: HistoryDoctor.net: Dr. Larry E. Gates, Jr.’s “European Migration and Imperialism” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Please read the entire webpage linked above.  This reading will give you a good sense of the European population explosion and political conflicts that spurred European migration.  It will also help you to understand the various aspects of the “New Imperialism” that characterized the late nineteenth century.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.2.1 The New Imperialism   - Reading: Rudyard Kipling’s “The White Man’s Burden” Link: Rudyard Kipling’s “The White Man’s Burden” (PDF)
 
Instructions: To open the PDF file, click on the link that says “kipling1899.PDF.”  Please read the entirety of the linked poem.  In this famous 1899 poem, the British writer Rudyard Kipling urges the United States to colonize the Philippines, which had come under American control after the Spanish-American War.  Though often reviled today, the poem was representative of the nineteenth-century European aspiration to dominate the developing world.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: Fordham University: Paul Halsall’s “Modern History Sourcebook: The Earl of Cromer: Why Britain Acquired Egypt in 1882, (1908)” Link: Fordham University: Paul Halsall’s “Modern History Sourcebook: The Earl of Cromer: Why Britain Acquired Egypt in 1882, (1908)” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: As you read, consider the following questions: What reasons does Cromer give for Britain’s presence in Egypt? What does Cromer see as problems in Egypt? How does Cromer describe those who govern Egypt? Why does Cromer disagree with the policy, “Egypt is for Egyptians?” Why is the intervention of Englishmen in Egypt preferable to intervention by other European powers?
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Lecture: Open Yale Courses: Charles Keith’s “Lecture 12 - French Imperialism” Link: Open Yale Courses: Charles Keith’s “Lecture 12 - French Imperialism” (YouTube)
     
    Instructions: As you watch this lecture, consider the following questions: What was new about French colonialism in the period 1871-1914? What drove the “explosion” of the French empire in this period? How did economic motivations contribute to France’s expanding empire? What was the “colonial lobby?” In what ways was the empire represented in popular culture in France? What were the claims of the anti-colonialism movement? If you wish to read a transcript of this lecture, you may do so here.
     
    Terms of Use: This resource is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 license

5.2.2 The Scramble for Africa   - Reading: BBC’s “The Story of Africa: Africa & Europe (1800-1914)” Link:  BBC’s “The Story of Africa: Africa & Europe (1800-1914)” (HTML)
 
Instructions:  Please read the article, and pages liked on the right hand-side, in their entirety, and make sure you listed to “Africa on the Eve of Colonialism” and “Partition & Resistance” radio series presented by Hugh Quarshie by using the hyperlinks at the bottom of the article.  This reading will present the causes and implications of Europeans’ traumatic colonization of Africa.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.2.3 Imperialism in Asia   - Reading: Northern Illinois University, Center for Southeast Asian Studies: Dr. Constance Wilson and Rey Ty’s “Colonialism and Nationalism in South East Asia” Link: Northern Illinois University, Center for Southeast Asian Studies: Dr. Constance Wilson and Rey Ty’s “Colonialism and Nationalism in South East Asia” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Please read the entire article, which covers European colonization of Southeast Asia in the late 1800s.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.2.4 Critics of Imperialism   - Reading: Edward Morel’s “The Black Man’s Burden” Link: Edward Morel’s “The Black Man’s Burden” (PDF)
 
Instructions:  To open the PDF file, scroll down to November 4, and click on the link for Morel’s excerpts.  Please read the entire webpage.  In this famous 1903 treatise, Edward Morel, a British journalist in the Congo, rebuts Kipling’s praise of imperialism.  Morel charges that in the Belgian Congo, imperialism is only an exploitative “burden” for Africans.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.3 Responses to Western Imperialism   - Reading: HistoryDoctor.net: Dr. Larry E. Gates, Jr.’s “Responses to European Imperialism” Link: HistoryDoctor.net: Dr. Larry E. Gates, Jr.’s “Responses to European Imperialism” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Please read the entire webpage in order to get a good overview of the responses to European imperialism in India, Japan, and China.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.3.1 India under British Control   - Reading: University of California, Los Angeles: Dr. Vinay Lal’s “British India” Link: University of California, Los Angeles: Dr. Vinay Lal’s “British India” (HTML)
 
Instructions:  Please read both pages of the article, paying special attention to Britain’s occupation of India in the late nineteenth century.  To access the second page, click on the hyperlink in “continued on page 2” at the bottom of the text on the first webpage.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.3.2 The Rise of Imperial Japan   - Reading: Fordham University: Paul Halsall’s “Modern History Sourcebook: Lt. Tadayoshi Sakurai: The Attack upon Port Arthur, 1905” Link: Fordham University: Paul Halsall’s “Modern History Sourcebook: Lt. Tadayoshi Sakurai: The Attack upon Port Arthur, 1905” (HTML)
 
Instructions: As you read, consider the following questions: How does Sakurai describe the atmosphere and spirit of the soldiers before going into battle? What images and motivations does Sakurai invoke?

 Terms of Use: <span
style="font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;">Please
respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage
above.</span>
  • Reading: Fordham University: Paul Halsall’s “Modern History Sourcebook: Okuma: From Fifty Years of New Japan, 1907-08” Link: Fordham University: Paul Halsall’s “Modern History Sourcebook: Okuma: From Fifty Years of New Japan, 1907-08” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: As you read, consider the following questions: According to the author, in what ways and in what respects had Japan advanced in a half century? What enabled Japan to become a world power? How did Japan maintain its traditional identity despite the influence of foreign ideas, institutions, and exchange?
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.3.3 Rebellion and Unrest in China   - Reading: Columbia University’s Asia for Educators: “From Reform to Revolution, 1842-1911” Link:  Columbia University’s Asia for Educators: “From Reform to Revolution, 1842-1911” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Please read the entire article to get a sense of China’s domestic response to pressures and problems created by Western imperial powers.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.