occurs when a strong nation takes over a weaker nation or region
and dominates its economic, political, or cultural life.
This type of foreign policy was practiced by European
nations and Japan throughout the 1800s and early 1900s.
In every case, a nation would experience
prior to practicing imperialism on a foreign nation or
region. This was due to the nearly insatiable demand for
raw materials and the need for markets to buy
Abundant raw materials and vast markets
are needed in order to maintain an industrialized economy.
Raw materials such as iron and cotton can be turned into products
such as steel and textiles. Finally, these products need to
be sold to a market in order to realize a profit.
The forces of industrialization caused nations to begin looking
of their borders for cheaper and more abundant raw materials.
Foreign populations were also viewed as vast markets where
goods produced in domestic factories could be sold.
Nationalism, or pride in ones country, also contributed
to the growth of imperialism. Citizens were proud of their
countrys accomplishments, which sometimes included taking
over foreign areas. As European nations became competitive
with one another, there was an increased pressure to practice
imperialism in order to maintain a
balance of power
As Europeans took over foreign lands, they viewed the culture
of the native population to be inferior to their own. This
concept became know as The White Mans Burden
after a popular poem by the same name was published by
interpreted this poem to mean that it was the duty of imperializing
nations to bring western
culture and sensibility to the savage
native populations that were encountered in far off lands.
This is sometimes referred to as Social Darwinism, or
the belief that all human groups compete for survival, and
that the stronger groups will replace the weaker groups. Others saw it as a warning to western nations to stop the
harmful practice of imperialism.
Industrial Revolution created an insatiable
demand for raw materials and new markets.
||European nations wanted to demonstrate their
power and prestige to the world.
|Balance of Power
||European nations were forced to acquire
new colonies to achieve a balance with their neighbors
|White Man's Burden
||The Europeansí sense of superiority made
them feel obligated to civilize the heathen savages
In the short-term, imperialism was a very profitable
foreign policy which came at the expense of the foreign
regions where it was being practiced.
also occurred, leading to an exchange of ideas between
the West and the East. For example, European methods of
education were adopted, leading foreigners to study
ideas of liberty and
democracy embraced during the
Enlightenment and various political
exchange eventually led to the demise of
colonialism throughout the world after
World War Two.