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Impacts of Colonialism on Economy and People

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Impacts of Colonialism on Economy and People - Lesson Summary

In the 19 th century, the world trade expanded and the European began to colonise Africa. Europeans wanted to get cheap raw material and labour from Africa.

Africa was long known as the Dark Continent due to its abundant jungles and natural resources. The continent had a relatively small population that never worked for wages. Africans had enough land and livestock to sustain them.

The Europeans wanted to exploit the minerals and other resources of Africa and had to employ people in the mines and plantations. The European rulers imposed heavy taxes and Inheritance laws on Africans.

An important event that led to the complete submission of natives was the outbreak of Rinderpest, a devastating cattle disease. Rinderpest was carried by infected cattle imported from British Asia which was used to feed the Italian soldiers invading East Africa. Rinderpest spread in Africa like wildfire and claimed almost ninety percent of the cattle.

This situation was manipulated by Colonial rulers and the native Africans were subdued and forced to work for wages. The carving of Africa was formally completed in 1885 in Berlin. Britain and France acquired a lot of colonies. Later, they were joined by Belgium, Germany, US and Spain.

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