However, the primary cause for engaging in imperialism was economic. European nations competed against one another to exploit Africans natural resources for financial gain. To begin with, political factors were one of the causes of European Imperialism. European nations wanted to gain power and restore their national pride. There were seven European nations that claimed land in Africa. (Doc A. ) These industrialized European powers had control of the land while the Africans had no say. Africa was losing land and they couldn’t do much about it because the British and the French were the dominant ones.
Their neighbors didn’t want to be surpassed in riches or glory by these two countries so they would do anything in their power to gain more and more power. Many in England believed that they had to take as much land as possible from Africa “or perish. ” They wanted to “advance the power of England by land and by sea. ” (Doc B. ) England wanted all the power they could get; it was a race for political power. Joining the race Germany believed that they “needed to prove and maintain its newly won position. “(Doc B. ) This meant that they wanted to take more colonies to prove that they had power.
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European powers wanted to maintain their national pride by competing and expanding their territory. This only accelerated European movement into Africa. In addition, cultural causes were a second driving force of European Imperialism. European nations wanted to spread their culture and civilize. The Europeans believed that they were the “superior race. ” “Take up the White Man’s burden… To serve your captives’ need; to wait in heavy harness… Your new-caught, sullen peoples, Half-devil and half-child. ” (Doc F. ) The Africans are a “burden” to the white race.
They’re trying to say that the Africans aren’t human, they re “half-devil. ” Because they believe that they are “half-devils” they take advantage of their race and treat them like slaves. They don’t only take advantage of the people but also of the land. “Did you ever see a chameleon catch a fly… England is the chameleon and Africa is the fly. ” (Doc F. ) England is sneaky like a chameleon and Africa is weak like a fly. England’s sneakiness is what allows them to take land from Africa in a blink of an eye. England is now dominant and Africa has no control of their own land anymore.
It’s being taken out of their hand, while Europeans are taking Africa and doing to it what they want. The most important driving force of European imperialism was economic gain. European nations wanted to make money through Africans advantages. First of all, Africans advantages helped with technological developments. The Bessemer process was a quicker method of manufacturing steel. (Doc C. ) It was a cheaper and more efficient process so it helped tremendously with improving European economy. Another technological development would be the method of getting quinine from cinchona tree bark. (Doc C) This method rated the killer disease malaria.
It helped the economy because it helped fight off the disease allowing Europeans to go in and out of Africa to get it’s natural resources and make money off of it. Another one of Africans advantages was that it had natural resources. (Doc D) The Europeans certainly found value in this and used these natural resources to their own advantage. They exported its goods all over the world and in the end left Africa with very little because they took everything they could get. They were very selfish and inconsiderate. By exporting all these natural resources they ere gaining lots of money while Africa was losing its goods.
The imports and exports in Africa were higher than ever in the sass’s after discovering Africans natural resources. (Doc E. ) In 1854 Africans imports were higher than its exports and in the 1 ass’s the exports were higher than the imports. This meant that the Europeans really took advantage of the situation. More goods were being sent out from Africa, than they were being sent into Africa. This only added up to the money the Europeans were getting by exporting so many goods. As you can see, political factors, cultural causes, and economic gain were the eating factors to European imperialism.
European nations were extremely selfish and inconsiderate. They took advantage of Africa for their own beneficial gain and didn’t even care about how it would affect them in the long run. Economic gain to me is the most important because it was the most benefiting for the Europeans and the one to affect Africa the most in the long run. They made the most money through Africans natural resources and left Africa with very little. Perhaps Africa is how it is today because of these seven selfish nations that let money and power get to their head.