European colonialism of Africa
The classical form of colonialism was first witnessed at a large scale in the Americas. Fortunately, Africa was able to withstand the utter destruction of native cultures as happened in North America. At present, Africa is perceived by the developing world as the next driver of global economic growth. These were the same sentiments that European powers in the 19th Century ascribed to prior to a competitive showdown for the expansive continent’s unfathomable wealth of natural resources. As Dennis Laumann provides in the book titled, “Colonial Africa, 1884-1994” the reasons, tactics, means for colonial administration, responses by indigenous populations, and eventual legacy is very intricate in nature.
As European industries expanded in the first half of the 19th Century, it became obvious that land was the only factor of production with limited supply. According to Laumann, colonialism is essentially the forceful invasion of a people groups in native regions followed by the subsequent occupation by the invaders in an effort to administrate on available resources like human resource and land (xi). The form of administration adopted by Europeans relative to the African continent was through small proxy bureaucracies essentially controlled from Europe but boasting great independence in the affairs of colonial lands. There were no motivations for the colonizers to extend social and political power given that the focus was promarily on the economic benefits presented.
It is obvious that the primary motivation for colonizing Africa was buoyed by the European hunger for economic progress. As Laumann posits, Lenin’s postulate on reasons behind imperialist expansion by European states was in line with the inadvertent demands placed on imperialists by Capitalist ideologies and eventual outcomes (1). Capitalistic growth could no longer be sustained as envisioned using internal resources therefore the need to look outwards took center stage. Africa presented very little resistance against the European invasion implying that minimal resources could be used to drive the European’s capitalist agendas.
Another profound reason stemmed from the abolition of slavery (Laumann 5). Continued progresses in social justice tenets within Europe as well as America necessitated for these economic powerhouses to look to other avenues that allowed cheap exploitation of r