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19th Century European Imperialism


19th Century European Imperialism Out with the Old and in with the New The Old Imperialism (to 1870) During the first three quarters of the 19th century, European ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: 19th Century European Imperialism

19th Century European Imperialism
Out with the Old and in with the New
The Old Imperialism (to 1870)
  • During the first three quarters of the 19th
    century, European powers showed little interest
    in overseas expansion.
  • In fact, it appeared that imperialism was on the
    way out.
  • Economic and political liberalism was largely
    against imperial ventures of political oppression
    and mercantilist trade.

The British Empire
  • The British Empire was the largest overseas
    empire in the early 19th century, but there was
    little interest in further expansion.
  • The American War of Independence still loomed
    over British colonial policy.
  • In the Western Hemisphere, British control in
    Canada expanded westward, but discontent was
  • The British North America Act of 1867 established
    the Dominion of Canada (extensive autonomy in
    domestic policy.
  • British continued to control much of the

The British Empire
  • Africa
  • The British had captured the Cape Colony during
    the Napoleonic Wars and trading stations along
    the coast.
  • In the 1820s, British settlers moved in, causing
    friction with the Boers (descendants of Dutch
    colonists who settled there in the 17th century.)
  • In the Great Trek of 1835-1837, Boers moved
    north and established the state of Transvaal and
    the Orange Free State.

The British Empire
  • India
  • In India, most of the British administration was
    controlled by the East India Company.
  • In 1857, Indian troops rebelled against British
    rule in the Great Mutiny (aka the Sepoy
  • This occurred as a result of BEIC abuses,
    cultural frictions, and rumors of pig and cow fat
    used in powder charges (insult to Hindus and
  • As a result, the British government took direct
    rule of India in 1858 (British Raj)

The British Empire
  • China
  • The British established a trade system of
    importing opium from India to China in return for
    tea during the 19th century.
  • When the Chinese government attempted to stop
    this, Britain went to war with China in 1842 (the
    Opium War).
  • China was quickly defeated, resuming the import
    of opium and Britain annexed Hong Kong in 1842.
  • As a result of further conflict, namely the
    Taiping Rebellion, China gave away more of its

The British Empire
  • The British also continued to control several key
  • Gibraltar and Malta in the Mediterranean
  • Aden in the Red Sea
  • Ceylon (Sri Lanka) in the Indian Ocean.
  • Singapore in the Pacific Ocean.
  • Australia and New Zealand were growing colonies
    for British and Irish settlers.

The British Empire
The Latin American Colonies
  • The Independence movements between 1804 and 1824
    in Latin America proved for the rest of Europe
    what the American Revolution proved for the
  • Nationalism and liberalism assured that Portugal
    would lose control of its vast territory in
    Brazil, France would lose Haiti, and Spain would
    lose the rest of Latin America, save Cuba and
    Puerto Rico (Spain also retained the Philippines
    in the Pacific).

The French Empire
  • Through the Seven Years War, and the
    Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, France had
    lost most of its overseas territories.
  • All of French North America was lost to the
    British, Spanish and Americans.
  • French influence in India was lost after the
    Seven Years War.

The French Empire
  • The French continued to have island colonies in
    the Caribbean on Guadeloupe and Martinique, as
    well as French Guiana in South America.
  • In Africa, the French operated several coastal
    trading stations and exerted some influence in
    Egypt and the Middle East.
  • In 1830, the French slowly began acquiring
    territorial rights in Algeria and in Indochina.

The Dutch Colonies
  • The Dutch, now a second rate power due to its
    small size and domination by surrounding powers
    protected what it had.
  • They continued to exploit what they could through
    trade and their island empire in the East Indies.
  • A revolt on Java between 1825 and 1830 was
    crushed, bring harsher rule by the Dutch.

Russian Expansion
  • Russia was the only European power to
    aggressively continue its expansionist policies
    throughout the 19th century.
  • In contrast, however, Russian expansion was over
    land and contiguous with its territory.
  • Russian expansion came at the cost of the
    crumbling Ottoman Empire along the Black Sea, a
    power vacuum in Central Asia, and Chinese
    weakness along the North Pacific Coast.

The Russian Empire
Austria, Prussia, and Italy
  • During the first half of the 19th century,
    overseas imperial expansion was not an option for
    Prussia, Austria, and the states of Italy.
  • Prussia and the Italian states were primarily
    concerned with domestic affairs (Rev. of 1848)
    and their unification movements.
  • Austria as well was concerned with internal
    affairs and any expansion came at the price of
    the Ottoman Empire in the Balkans.

The New Imperialism
  • In the late 1860s and 1870s, European powers
    began to reverse their disdain for obtaining
    formal colonies.
  • In the period from 1870 to 1914, European nations
    (as well as the U.S. and Japan) would go on a
    colonization drive like never before.
  • In just a couple of decades, nearly all of Africa
    and large areas of Asia and the Middle East would
    come under European domination.

Motivations for New Imperialism
  • Nationalism and competition among states for
    additional territory was a major political and
    psychological factor.
  • The influence of Social Darwinism pushed the
    strongest to survive and to dominate the weak.
  • Humanitarian and religious considerations led to
    military interventions, missionary zeal, and the
    civilizing mission.
  • European industrial development caused the need
    for natural resources and new markets to sell in
    and invest.

Imperialism and European Society
  • Policies in colonial possessions were often used
    as test beds for social policy at home
    hospitals, schools, law enforcement, and
    infrastructure was often tested in colonies.
  • Imperialistic ventures were used as nationalistic
    propaganda at home and was a way of forming
    national unity in the face of class tensions.
  • Liberals often opposed imperial ventures where
    conservatives favored them.

The British Empire
  • Asia
  • Consolidation of the British Raj continued as the
    British government expanded its formal rule over
    greater territories in northern and western
  • In 1877, Queen Victoria was declared Empress of
  • British control expanded eastward into Burma, and
    Malaya and northward to the border with
    Afghanistan (created as a buffer against the

(No Transcript)
The British Empire
  • Egypt
  • In 1875, the British bought a 44 percent share in
    the previously French controlled Suez Canal
  • The British took a greater role in Egyptian
    affairs until it was made a British Protectorate
    in 1882.
  • East and West Africa
  • In East and West Africa, Britain expanded its old
    trading posts into full colonies, leading to
    conflict with the natives (example Anglo-Zulu
    War of 1879)
  • These included Gambia, Sierra Leone, The Gold
    Coast, Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, and Somalia.

Battle of Roukes Drift in the Anglo-Zulu War.
The British Empire
  • South Africa
  • Led by the efforts of imperialist and capitalist
    Cecil Rhodes.
  • Rhodes made fortune in diamonds, discovered in
    Cape Colony in 1869.
  • He pressed for British expansion in Southern
  • Tensions mounted in the 1880s with the discovery
    of gold in Transvaal, British prospectors moved
    in with the blessing of Rhodes, the PM of Cape

The Boer War (1899-1902)
  • President Paul Kruger of Transvaal was convinced
    the British were going to annex their state,
    Kruger then tried to ally with Germany.
  • Tensions led to war in 1899. The Boers led a
    determined guerilla war that lasted four years
    (first post-modern war?). The Boers were often
    placed in concentration camps.
  • With the end of the war in 1902 and the creation
    of the Union of South Africa in 1910, the Boers
    were integrated into the British Dominion and
    came to dominate it.

The British Empire
The British Empire, 1914
The French Empire
  • In the 1870s, the French extended their colonial
    control over North and Western Africa.
  • Algeria was made a full colony, with large
    numbers of French settlers moving in to farm.
  • Control was then extended to Tunisia and Morocco
    and large amounts of territory in French West
    Africa, Senegal, Guinea and the Ivory Coast, as
    well as Madagascar
  • In Asia, French Indochina was colonized.

Anglo-French Conflict in Sudan
  • An uprising in the Sudan under the leadership of
    the infamous Mahdi threatened British interests.
  • General Charles Gordon reached Khartoum in 1884
    to evacuate the garrison but was besieged by the
    Madhi, the British troops were massacred.
  • In 1897, Lord Kitchener retook Khartoum. He then
    set off down the Nile with a flotilla of gunboats
    to confront French General Marchand at Fashoda.
    This precipitated the Fashoda Crisis when,
    ultimately unable to face a naval war with
    Britain, the French backed down.

Scramble for Africa Leopold II
  • In the 1870s, King Leopold II of Belgium began
    the process of creating a personal colony in the
    Congo Basin, the Berlin Conference made his
    acquisitions legal. Leopold used forced labor in
    the production of rubber, ivory and minerals.
  • As international protests intensified, the
    Belgian government took control of the Belgian
    Congo in 1908.

Scramble for Africa Berlin Conference
  • Intense rivalries among Belgium, France, Germany,
    Great Britain, Italy, Spain, and Portugal for
    additional African territory, and ill-defined
    boundaries of their various holdings, instigate
    the Berlin Conference of 1884-1885 (organized by
  • Powers defined their spheres of influence and
    laid down rules for future occupation on the
    coasts of Africa.
  • No African states were invited to the Berlin
    conference, and none signed these agreements.

Imperialism in China
  • By the end of the 19th century, every major
    European power had established spheres of
    influence in China.
  • The weakening of the Manchu dynasty made the
    situation worse.
  • The newly industrial and imperialistic Japanese
    defeated the Chinese in the Sino-Japanese war of
    1894-95, seceding further control of Chinas

Imperialism in China
  • At the same time Europeans were colonizing for
    nationalism, riches and religion, massed of
    people were migrating from Europe to other areas
    of the world.
  • Estimates say that over 25 million people
    migrated from Europe between 1875 to 1914.
  • Nearly half migrated to the Americas, others went
    to Australia, Africa, and Asia.

Effects of Imperialism
  • European imperialism had dramatic impact on
    Europe and the wider world.
  • European society was altered due to its
    predominate position, economic benefits and
    costs, external influences, and competition among
  • The colonized world was drastically changed, with
    European cultural, economic, and political ideas
    becoming the global norm.
  • The positives and negatives for both sides are
    still very much debated today and still affect
    todays world.
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