Western Hemisphere Colonization Essay - Essay Prowess

Western Hemisphere Colonization Essay


Kindly ADD to CART and Purchase an Editable Word Document at $5.99 ONLY



Several factors led to the western hemisphere colonization from European powers such as the Spanish, Portuguese, French, British and Dutch. Colonization was a result of exploration, the spread of religious beliefs, and search for economic prosperity as well as political reasons. Following discoveries of the sea route to America in 1492, European nations started exploring, settling, conquering and exploiting many parts of the world, especially western hemisphere (Wallerstein, 2011, p. 24). The factors produced various effects on life, culture and economics of the colonialists. The economic reasons for western hemisphere colonization led to infrastructure and industrial development in the continent. In addition to that, it also led to development of trade, such as transatlantic trade (Abdel-Malek, 2000, p. 39). On the contrary, the social factors of colonization led to spread of Christianity and spread of European languages and culture in the new world (Wallerstein, 2011, p. 97). However, both the economic and social reasons have caused an increase in population in the western hemisphere, because of introduction of medicine and sanitations in the new world.

Spanish were first to establish colonies in western hemisphere, which generated a lot of economic prosperity. Inspired by Spanish riches from their western colonies, other European nations scrabbled for large territories in order to increase their wealth. In turn, the infrastructure has been also continually developing, such as roads, railways and harbors (Abdel-Malek, 2000, p. 154). The Europeans needed proper roads to transport goods and, therefore, they developed accessible means of transport. They have also spread technology in western hemisphere, such as constructions of ships and locomotives. Additionally, they caused to establishment of processing industries in their colonies. Western hemisphere colonization also led to development of trade. The French, British and Spanish, for instance, engaged in cash plantations. In addition, they were involved in the mining of gold and other minerals in the content (Scheman, 2003, p. 48). Ultimately, they sold these materials in Europe and Asia. Further, transatlantic trade developed, first of all, because of colonization (Wallerstein, 2011, p. 107). They also traded in commodities such as slaves, firearms and food crops.

However, there were different effects of economic factors as compared to the social reasons. The social factors generated effects such as spread of Christianity, culture and language. Religious immigrants caused spread of different denominations, such as Roman Catholics, Anglican, Lutherans, Baptist and Lutherans. Protestant reformation forced some of the religious groups to search for colonies outside Europe in 16th century (Abdel-Malek, 2000, p. 158). Therefore, some of the English immigrants, who moved to America, were against the practices of Church of England. Social reasons caused spread of languages, such as French, Spanish and Portuguese in western hemisphere (Scheman, 2003, p. 53). In addition to that, they led of spread of European culture in these colonies, such as eating habits, marriage and family’s background.

Most notably, economic and social reasons had similar effects of western hemisphere after colonization. These reasons led to use of medicines and drugs to cure and prevent various tropical diseases (Wallerstein, 2011, p. 128). Due to high mortality rate in these colonies, the Spanish transported smallpox vaccines to their colonies for mass vaccinations. The programs on mass vaccination helped to eliminate disease and other tropical (Scheman, 2003, p. 57).


In conclusion, taking into account these facts, the economic reasons were most influential, as compared to social reasons after western colonization. Economic factors have led to development of infrastructure, industries and trade, such as transatlantic trade. In turn, social development led to spread of Christianity, languages and culture (Wallerstein, 2011, p. 154). However, economic and social colonization has caused an increase in population for the reason of using drugs and medicine in western hemisphere and most of the epidemic diseases were eliminated.



Abdel-Malek, A. (2000). The Civilizational Orientation in the Making of the New World. Journal of world-systems research, 1, 3.

Scheman, L. (2003). Greater America. New York: NYU Press.

Wallerstein, I. (2011). The modern world-system I: capitalist agriculture and the origins of the European world-economy in the sixteenth century, with a new prologue (Vol. 1). Univ of California Press.