Imperialism has largely been a failure for the indigenous people of the developing world. Native people lost rights, land, and livelihoods whenever they were not being exterminated outright by colonizers who viewed them as pests. In North America, entire languages have been forgotten over time as white colonizers insisted that the natives speak English. The Spanish melted down priceless treasures of the Aztecs with the idea that they were destroying idols. Belgium was infamous in Europe for enslaving the local population of the Congo to work in diamond mines.
European internal improvements to their colonies were also meant to serve European business needs. This lack of investment has led to continuing poverty throughout Africa and parts of Asia. Europeans also supported local leaders who would promote European interests over native people's needs. This has left a legacy of corrupt governance throughout the developing world.
Eurocentrism also exists when recording the histories of colonized areas. Until recently, most histories have been recorded by the colonizers who portray the natives as either simpletons or vicious savages meant to be tamed or exterminated. European histories of colonized areas are written as if history did not exist before Europeans arrived. Modern historians examine history from the native viewpoint as well; however, many stories and descriptions of historical events have been lost due to the destruction of native records and language loss. The field of native historiography is one of the fastest-growing fields of historical study.