Imperialism

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What was the impact of European imperialism and trade on Asia?

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The impact of this expansion was different in different parts of Asia.  Some examples include:

  • India was impacted by imperialism.  This destroyed the system of small states on the subcontinent and made India one political entity.  It brought democracy and European education to the area.  On the other hand, it took away India's independence and can perhaps be blamed for trying to make one polity out of all the ethnic and religious groups that inhabited what was called British India.
  • China was also impacted.  For it, the impact was almost all negative.  It was subjected to unequal treaties after the Opium Wars, harming its population and weakening its government.
  • In Japan, by contrast, the impact was largely positive.  Japan was "opened" by the US in the 1850s and was soon a major power.  European contact caused Japan to modernize without subjecting it to true imperialism.

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