In this project on Imperialism in Africa, we focused on learning how to find evidence that would analyze our thesis. This is an important skill because it's a basic writing skill that I would use throughout my life. One thing I improved while working on this project is my ability to analyze evidence. This blog post provides a reflection on my work, as well as a sample of what I accomplished. My strength I showed was my ability to find evidence that relates to my claim. Something to work on in my next essay is to analyze my evidence better.
The one thing that helped me stay organized on this DBQ was the graphic organizers, the one on the google doc and on paper. This really helped me because it made the writing part seem little and not hard. When I got stuck on writing an analysis or a conclusion of a paragraph, I move on and do what I can do and then when I get my thought, I would go back and add on. I felt like this made my writing process so much easier because I'm not confused are lost.
All Because of the Economics
In the 19th and 20th century, Europeans started to take over Africa part by part. Imperialism started with King Leopold of Belgium wanting to make money from his private country in Africa by taking out ivory and rubber. He then proceeded to kill Africans through forced labor, mistreatment, and diseases. The primary driving force of imperialism in Africa is economics because Africa had loads of resources which benefited Europe in many ways. Although a strong case could be made that technology was the driving force, this argument is unconvincing because economics is what guided and advance technology to where it was.
With the amount of resources that Africa had it was the primary driving force for Imperialism. According to document D, Africa had a great deal of different resources exported to Europe which was used for industrial and economic uses. Resources that were exported such as cotton, coffee, rubber, ivory and many types metals. This shows that because of the economics in Africa, they were able to have food products, metals (which led to useful inventions), and clothes. These are simple things that people would want and since Africa had so much of it, it clearly explains why Europeans took over Africa. In document E, it displays a graph that shows that in 1854, Africa had about 4 million pounds worth of resources imported and resources about 3 million pounds exported to Africa. In 1900, 8 million pounds were imports from Africa and 21 million pounds of resources exported to Africa. This evidence shows that the amount of resources exported from Africa increased about 18 million pounds. This shows that Europeans made a lot more money by getting resources from Africa, then selling it in Africa. To summarize, the amount of resources exported in Africa benefited Europeans so much that it made them crave more, which led to Imperialism in Africa.
It has been argued that the main desire of imperialism in Africa was because of their technology. In Document C, the table shows that the technology invented were steam engines, treatment for malaria, electric telegraph, bessemer process, and guns. Since Europeans were so vulnerable to malaria, having a cure for it would really help Europeans conquer Africa. Guns and rifles were also a very useful technological development because it gave European armies an advantage over African armies. There is some truth to the argument that technology was very helpful for the Europeans. However, without money, and their economics, Europe wouldn’t be able to have and advance their technology at all. They wouldn’t have even thought of using technology. According to document D, one of the popular resources exported from Africa were metals, lead, and coal. Which were used for ammunition and fuel. This evidence illustrates that even though technology was a reason for the Europeans to conquer Africa, without the resources, it was not possible for bullets to be made, guns, fuel, and other helpful inventions. To conclude, if were not for technology, Europe may have not been able to conquer Africa, but without the resources/economics, there would not even have been techonology in the first place.
Economic factors were more of a driving force behind European imperialism than nationalism, technology, and ethnocentrism because it was more effective and without it, other factors would not have any influence. Since Africa had a large supply of different resources, Europeans slowly started to increase the amount of resources exported from Africa and eventually colonize the continent. It influenced European colonies to take them and make money with the resources, which was very beneficial for them. From doing this, they gained more money, products, and supplies which made their people happy.