Molefe Asante and Maulana Karengas work The Handbook of Black Studies explained greatly how Africa could prosper more from their land and the opportunism that arise from it. Among these opportunities are ones of “economic enhancement as well as unfettered shelter; social and cultural advancement.” (Karenga & Asante 6) I think that these external interventions helped Africa grow and expand, but also took away some of the cultural aspect of their country. Throughout this essay I will dive in deeper to how and why the reasons listed above had positive effects and negative effects on Africa.
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While these beliefs of growth and underdevelopment exist is most commonly talked about in the economic environment, the process of growth encompasses a wide range of factors, cultural, political, ethnicity, geography, etc., distinct to the environment in question. It should be realized that growth is comparative in nature, as nations in the developing countries are just considered “developing” in relation to the industrial countries of earth. More importantly, this idea of underdevelopment, particularly as it relates to the former colonies of imperialist countries, inherently involves the relation of economic exploitation imposed from the imperialist country onto lesser developed nations. Through these schemes of economic exploitation, the effects of underdevelopment are perpetuated, very frequently creating a host of corresponding social ills that further hinder attempts towards movement. About the external interventions impacting Africa, I think that sometimes it took away some cultural aspects from Africa, but I also believe that without the help of these countries Africa’s economy and independence wouldn’t be nearly what it is at today.
Most countries in Africa were colonized by European states in this first modern period, including the fire of settlement at the Scramble for Africa from 1880 to 1900. But the status was overturned over the course of the future century by freedom movements. Here are these dates of freedom for African countries. Overall, colonialism had a significant influence in continent in terms of political, economic and social hemispheres. Although some African countries attained independence during the 1950s and 1960s, the new form of settlement, Neocolonialism, has kept the economy intact. African countries are even the main sources of natural materials for European nations and those highest importers of processed products. This ideology of perceiving European traditions and languages as the mark of culture is still leading. The economic effect of the colonization of Africa has been argued. In that moment, these beliefs are biased between researchers, some of them believe that Europeans had a positive effect on Africa; others assert that continent's growth was slowed down by colonial rule.
European countries saw Africa as mature for the action. Some Europeans argued that by colonizing continent, they were likewise exporting society to the Europe which they considered as evolutionary backward and untapped. It was the European obligation to function as trustees of Africa until Africans were big enough to regulate themselves. Nevertheless, colonization was actually driven by commercial pursuits. EU could benefit tremendously from its exploitation of Africa.
The main objective of colonial rule in Africa by European colonial powers was to exploit physical abundance in the African continent at the reduced price. “The rivers of Africa were viewed by Europeans as trading arteries to and from the heart of the continent.” (Shillington 333) Africa as a continent has always been known to have lot of unclaimed possibility in its economic development arsenal. Amongst them are its incredible power in human assets, great area of earth and abundance of untapped raw materials, with this being said, I think that the nations that colonized Africa do owe them at least a helping hand to get their country more developed, because Africa has done a lot for those nations by supplying land and other raw materials for that nation to be successful. Africa is the continent of staggering potential. Yet, it is also one that, Sadly, even encounters the number of barriers that are presently taking this Europe back from living up to its possible and unleashing this economic growth that Africa’s citizens deserve. One such obstacle is the need of proper food and sanitation structure. But in South Africa’s system is from the creation and exportation of minerals. South Africa is one of the most different material manufacturers. The primary cause for this development of the system was the discovery of gold and diamonds. It took in foreigners from all around the country making that exporting rates increase.
- Asante, Molefi Kete, and Maulana Karenga. Handbook of Black Studies. Sage Publications, 2006.
- Shillington, Kevin. History of Africa. Red Globe Press, 2019.
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