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Europeans in Africa

2nd try on European Imperialism on the African Continent

Ed Feldheim

on 6 May 2013

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Transcript of Europeans in Africa

European Imperialism in Africa Began with the Greeks and the Romans Trade throughout the Medditeranean resulted in a great deal of interaction between the Southern European and North African cultures What is Imperialism? Well, Websters says it's the domination by a powerful nation over the economic, political and cultural life of another weaker nation So why does one country want to control another? Political reasons countries are really competitive, like brothers and sisters, and they don't like another country to have what they don't Economic reasons Powerful countries need both new markets to sell their products in as well as resources to fuel their economies Cultural reasons European countries had the strong belief that they were better, more advanced, more civilized than the African nations they took control of. This was especially true when it came to their Christian religion. The Mad Scramble for Africa The European Nations all wanted their own piece of the continent France and Britian controlled the largest portions of the continent King Leopold II of Belgium was perhaps the harshest foreign ruler “the result was one of the most brutal and all-encompassing corveé institutions the world has known...Male rubber tappers and porters were mercilessly exploited and driven to death.”[1] Leopold's agents held the wives and children of these men hostage until they returned with their rubber quota. Those who refused or failed to supply enough rubber had their villages burned down, children murdered, and hands cut off.[2] Who controlled what? So what's the big deal? Rwanda was granted independence from the Belgians in 1962, but the system of segregation that the Belgians had imposed still lasts till this day During Belgian control the Hutus were abused by the Tutsi and the Belgian colonists. Hutus were the majority in the country and they were not allowed to advance in society, effectively creating two classes of Rwandans. In 1994, Hutu militia rose up and began a slaughter of the Tutsi minority that resulted in the genocide of over 1 million Rwandans Are there benefits to such a system? What about the Imperial country, don't they get something out of it? http://www.yale.edu/gsp/colonial/belgian_congo/index.html It is estimated that Leopold made $1,500,000 a year in profits from his control of the Congo Free State What else do Imperial countries get from controlling another weaker nation? Can you think of 3 things? 1. 2. 3. Your assignment, should you accept it, is to be a Human Rights activist in 1915. You are furious at what is going on in Leopold's Congo Free State and your first step in trying to stop the slaughter is to write a letter to other European Nations asking for help.
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