Chapter 26: The West and the World. Reading Quiz. What is a third world nation? (definition) 2. What is an example of a third world nation? 3. Why did China and Japan want to remain “closed”? 4. Explain how China became “open”. 5. Explain how Japan became “open”. Reading Quiz.
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Reading Quiz • What is a third world nation? (definition) 2. What is an example of a third world nation? 3. Why did China and Japan want to remain “closed”? 4. Explain how China became “open”. 5. Explain how Japan became “open”.
Reading Quiz 1. Why did the “great migration” occur? 2. Why was Asian migration halted at the end of the nineteenth century? 3. Who was the Boer War between? Who won? Why? 4. What military weapon was invented in this time period aiding the Europeans in battle? 5. What were the double standards critics of imperialism charged the Europeans with?
The Pressure of Population • Birthrates declined in the 19th century, but so did death rates, mainly because of the rising standard of living and also because of the medical revolution. Thus the population of Europe more than doubled (188m in 1800 to 432m in 1900). • Between 1815 and 1932 more than 60 million people left Europe, these migrants went to the “areas of European settlement”, where BIG growth happened. • The rapid increase in numbers put pressure on the land and led to land hunger and relative overpopulation in area after area. Millions of country folk went abroad as well as to nearby cities in search of work and economic opportunities. • The number of men and women leaving Europe increased rapidly before WWI and different countries had different patterns of movement. • Review the charts regarding population (26.2 and 26.3) on pages 864-865.
European Migration • The European migrant was most often a small peasant landowner or village craftsman whose traditional way of life was threatened by too little land, estate agriculture, and cheap, factory-made goods. • The European migrant was generally an energetic small farmer or skilled artisan trying hard to stay ahead of poverty. • Migrants were a great asset to the countries that received them mainly because they were young and unmarried , in the prime of their life and ready to work. • Many Europeans were truly migrants as opposed to immigrants, they returned home after some time abroad. • The mass movement of Italians illustrates many of the characteristics of European migration. 3 out of 4 depended on agriculture. With the influx of cheap North American wheat, the long standing problems of the Italian village became more acute. Immigration provided them with an escape.
Asian Migration • A substantial number of Chinese, Japanese, Indians, and Filipinos responded to rural hardship with temporary or permanent migration. At least 3 million Asians moved abroad before 1920. • In the 1840s there was a strong demand for field hands in Cuba, and the Spanish government actively recruited Chinese laborers. When this stopped in 1873, 130,000 Chinese laborers went to Cuba, the majority becoming slaves. • Such migration from Asia would undoubtedly grown to much greater proportions if planters and mine owners in search of cheap labor had been able to hire as many Asian workers as they wished. • European settlers demanded a halt to Asian migration. By the 1880s, Americans and Australians were building great white walls – discriminatory laws designed to keep Asians out (general policy of whites only).
The Scramble for Africa • As late as 1880, European nations controlled only 10% of the African continent, and their possessions were hardly increasing. By 1880 substantial numbers of French, Italian, and Spanish colonists had settled amongst the Arab majority. • In South Africa, the British had taken possession of the Dutch settlements at Cape Town during the wars of Napoleon I, obviously upsetting the Dutch. Thus the Dutch began moving inward into the continent where they fought the Zulu and Xhosa. • After 1853 the Boers, or Afrikaners, proclaimed their political independence. • Between 1880 and 1900, Britain, France, Germany, and Italy scrambled for African possessions as if their national livelihoods depended on it. By 1900 nearly the whole continent had been carved up and placed under European rule. • The Dutch settler republics also succumbed to imperialism with different effects. They ended up in war with the British, the Boer War (1899-1902), the British won. • By 1882, Europe had caught “African Fever” and there was a gold rush mentality – the race for territory was on.
To lay down basic rules, Jules Ferry of France and Otto von Bismarck of Germany arranged an international conference on Africa in Berlin in 1884 and 1885. • They declared “effective occupation”, Europeans would push relentlessly into interior regions from all sides and that no single European power could claim the entire continent. • The British began enlarging their West African enclaves and impatiently pushing northward from the Cape Colony and westward from Zanzibar. Their thrust southward from Egypt was blocked in the Sudan by fiercely independent Muslims, who massacred a British force at Khartoum in 1885. • A decade later, another British force, under General Kitchener, moved cautiously and successfully up the Nile River, building a railway as it went. They met their foe in 1898 at Omdurman, where Muslim tribesmen armed with spears charged time and time again, only to be defeated by the recently invented machine gun. • “It was not a battle but an execution.” In the end, 11,000 Muslims dies and only 28 Britons. • Soon after the British found themselves in conflict with the French over the territory of the northern Nile. Distracted by the Dreyfus Affair, the French lost.
Causes of the New Imperialism • Economic motives played an important role in the extension of political empires, especially the British Empire. By the late 1870s, France, Germany, and the U.S. were industrializing rapidly behind rising tariff barriers. Britain was losing its early lead and facing increasingly tough competition abroad. • When continental powers began to grab territory in the 1880s, the British followed suit immediately for fear of France and Germany sealing off their empires with high tariffs. • Actually, the new colonies were too poor to buy much. Nonetheless, even the poorest, most barren desert was jealously prized, and no territory was ever abandoned. Each country saw colonies as crucial to national security, military power, and international prestige. • European nations, which were seen as racially distinct parts of the dominant white race, had to seize colonies to show they were strong and virile. Moreover, since racial struggle was nature’s inescapable law, the conquest of the “inferior” peoples was just. Social Darwinism and harsh racial doctrines fostered imperialism.
Industrial technology also fueled imperialism: • The machine gun was the ultimate weapon in battle, • Newly discovered quinine proved no less effective in controlling attacks of malaria, • The combination of the steamship and the international telegraph permitted western powers to quickly concentrate their firepower in a given area when necessary. • Social tensions and domestic political conflicts also contributed to overseas expansion. Imperial propagandist relentlessly stressed that colonies benefited workers as well as capitalists, providing jobs and cheap raw materials that raised workers’ standard of living. • Conservative leaders defined imperialist development as a national necessity, which they used to justify the status quo and their hold on power. • Certain special-interest groups in each country were powerful agents of expansion. Shipping companies wanted lucrative subsidies, white settlers demanded more land and greater protection, missionaries and humanitarians wanted to spread religion and stop the slave trade. • The issue however was not only pertaining to conquest, some thought that the Europeans should and could “civilize” more primitive, nonwhite peoples. Nonwhites would eventually receive the benefits of modern economies, cities, advanced medicines, and higher standards of living. “In time they might even be ready for self-government and Western Democracy.” (white-man’s burden)
Critics of Imperialism • After the Boer War, the radical English economist J.A. Hobson in his Imperialism contended that the rush to acquire colonies was due to the economic needs of unregulated capitalism, particularly the need of the rich to find outlets for their surplus capital. • He further concluded that only special interests profited from colonies, at the expense of both the European taxpayer and the natives. • Hobson and many other critics rebelled against crude Social Darwinian thought. • In Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad castigated the “pure selfishness” of Europeans in “civilizing” Africa. • Critics charged Europeans with applying a degrading double standard and failing to live up to their own noble ideals. At home Europeans had won or were winning representative government, individual liberties, and certain equality of opportunity. In their colonies, Europeans imposed military dictatorships on Africans and Asians; forced them to work involuntarily, almost like slaves; and discriminated against them shamelessly.
Empire in India • India was the jewel of the British Empire, it was ruled more or less absolutely by Britain for a very long time. • The British East India Company had conquered the last independent native state by 1848. The last “traditional” response to European rule was broken in 1857 and 1858. This is known as the Great Rebellion – thereafter Britain ruled India directly. • After 1858, India was ruled by the British Parliament in London and administered by a tiny, all-white civil service in India. In 1900 this elite consisted of fewer than 3,500 top officials, for a population of 300 million. • The British practiced strict job discrimination and social segregation, and considered the Indians to be racially inferior. In spite of these feelings, the British introduced many desirable changes for India, such as education. • The reaction to European rule was the rise of nationalism among the Indian elite because the top jobs, the best clubs, the modern hotels, and even certain railroad compartments were sealed off to Indians. • By 1885, educated Indians created the Indian National Congress fighting for the equality and self government that Britain had already granted to its other white colonies, such as Canada and Australia.
The Example of Japan • In 1853, a figurehead emperor stood at the top of a complex feudal system. The real power lied with the military governor, the shogun. With the help of a warrior nobility known as the samurai, the shogun governed Japan. • When foreign diplomats and merchants began to settle in Yokohama, radical samurai reacted with antiforeign terrorism and antigovernment assassinations between 1858 and 1863. • In 1867, a coalition led by patriotic samurai seized control of the government and restored the political power of the emperor (Meiji Restoration). “Enrich the state and strengthen the armed forces.” • In a sudden about-face, the Meiji dropped their antiforeign attacks, convinced that Western Civilization was superior to its military and industrial aspects. They did this to protect the nation and catch up with the west. • In 1871, they dismantled the four-class legal system and declared social equality. They decreed freedom of movement, and created a free, competitive, government-stimulated economy.
A powerful modern navy was created, and the army was completely reorganized along European lines, with three year military services for all males and professional officer corps. • Many Japanese were encouraged to study abroad, and the government paid large salaries to attract foreign experts. • Following the model of the German Empire, Japan established an authoritarian constitution and rejected democracy. • Japan successfully copied the imperialism of Western society. Having “opened” Korea in 1876, Japan decisively defeated China in a war over Korea in 1894and in 1895 took Formosa (modern-day Taiwan). • By 1910, with the annexation of Korea, Japan had become a major imperialist power.
Toward Revolution in China • In 1860, the 200 year old Qing Dynasty in China appeared to be on the verge of collapse. Efforts to repel foreigners failed and rebellion and chaos wrecked the country. • The Sino-Japanese War of 1894 to 1895 and the subsequent harsh peace treaty revealed China’s helplessness in the face of aggression, triggering a rush for foreign concessions and protectorates in China. • At the high point of this rush in 1898, it appeared that the European powers might actually divide China among themselves – probably only the jealousy of each nation felt toward its imperialist competitors saved China from partition. • In 1898 the government launched a desperate hundred days of reform in an attempt to meet the foreign challenge. Some traditionalists turned back towards ancient practices, political conservatism, and fanatical hatred of the “foreign devils”. “Protect the country, destroy the foreigner”. • In the agony of defeat societies such as the Boxers rebelled. This led to chaos in China. Finally in 1912 the Qing dynasty fell and a loose coalition of revolutionaries proclaimed a Western-style republic and called for an elected parliament.