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What are the effects of imperialism on our world today?What are the effects of...

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kwl2933 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 11, 2011 at 2:30 PM via web

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What are the effects of imperialism on our world today?

What are the effects of imperialism on our world today?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 11, 2011 at 3:05 PM (Answer #2)

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There are many things that can be cited as effects of imperialism that we see today.  I will mention two of these:

  • Many countries have problems that can be blamed on imperialism.  For example, Iraq has issues between its Sunni Muslims, its Shiite Muslims, and its Kurds.  The only reason they are all together in one country is that the British set the boundaries that way.  This ethnic/religious strife can, one can argue, be blamed on the British.  One can also blame imperial powers for not preparing their African (for example) colonies for self-government, leaving them with the sorts of instability many now have.
  • Imperialism  has also created animosity between countries that were once imperialists and the countries they once colonized.  For example, South Korea and China both still have somewhat shaky relations with Japan because Japan colonized parts of both countries in the early 1900s.
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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 11, 2011 at 4:31 PM (Answer #3)

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You might also like to think about the legacy of imperialism in such countries as Afghanistan, which has been used as a war ground for stronger nations during the cold war and now has a bitter legacy of unrest and rebel movements vying with the recognised government for power. It appears that imperialism is still felt today. One only has to look at Africa, known to some as the graveyard of imperialism, to see how nations are still held back by their colonial past.

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krcavnar | High School Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted April 12, 2011 at 2:43 PM (Answer #4)

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Imperialism can best be seen as harmful in the uprising in Rwanda.  The British used "divide and conquer" strategy with the native Hutu and Tutsi by forcing them to acknowledge differences between the tribes such as skin color and even their noses, although this was tenuous distinction.  If they hated each other they would not hate the British to the extent of raising up into rebellion. 

The British gave the Tutsi advantages primarily because there were fewer of them and they were the lighter-skinned of the two tribes.  Animosity between the two tribes developed for years due to the disparity in treatment by the British.  This precipitated the massacre of the Tutsi by the Hutu who had gained power after the British left Rwanda. 

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lrwilliams | College Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted April 12, 2011 at 4:43 PM (Answer #5)

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I would say that Imperialism generally ends up being a negative thing in most cases. In the beginning it may seem better for the country that is being colonized as they may experience new found rights and maybe even wealth. However in the end the country that is in control of the colonies is only interested in what is going to help them and are not concerned with how it may harm others.

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kwl2933 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 14, 2011 at 6:42 AM (Answer #6)

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I would say that Imperialism generally ends up being a negative thing in most cases. In the beginning it may seem better for the country that is being colonized as they may experience new found rights and maybe even wealth. However in the end the country that is in control of the colonies is only interested in what is going to help them and are not concerned with how it may harm others.

thanks to all!

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litteacher8 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted June 23, 2011 at 3:15 PM (Answer #7)

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I think that one of the most compelling effects of imperialism is Africa. Africa was sliced up like a pizza by different European countries. It is still suffering from poverty and instability, and likely will be for a long time. The effects of imperialism on Africa also spread to slavery in the United States and the Caribbean. There is still a lot of pain there.
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brettd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted September 4, 2011 at 7:36 AM (Answer #8)

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Africa and Latin America are the most stark examples of colonial legacy, in my mind.  Because of the imposition of artificial borders and an influx of weapons (accelerated by the Cold War) Africa is still a war torn place with a lot of misery to go around.  Latin America still suffers from huge disparities of wealth between wealthy descendants of imperial settlers and landowners and the agricultural peasantry.  Only recently have countries from either continent been able to harness their own resources for ther own benefit, and then only sometimes.

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