Why Did the West Imperialize East Asian Countries?

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Last updated: May 20, 2019

Why Did the West Imperialize East Asian Countries? : A positive or negative effect. Claire Lay East Asian History Rogers 10-1-2012 It was Marco Polo’s tales of encountering China for the first time, and talk of Asian spices, accounts of exotic raw materials, agriculture, new technology, and a large consumer population that that first enticed western ideals. Since the late 13th and early 14th centuries, missionaries have been back and forth through Asia spreading the Christian word; all though it was truly was Polo’s grand tales that spiked westerners’ interests in Asia.According to the dictionary imperialism is defined as, the policy of extending the rule or authority of an empire or nation over foreign countries, or of acquiring and holding colonies and dependencies, though some mite define it as an unequal and possible an unwanted dominative relationship between one nation and another. The true question is; did imperialism have a positive or negative effect on these East Asian countries?According to our book Westernization became popular and in 1890 Japan, from the style of clothing to even writing a western style constitution, also leading China to do the same. Imperialism, while invasive, did bring civilization and economic affluence to many third-world countries.

“Modern transportation and communications technologies, such as the steamship, the railway, and the telegraph, knit the planet together, more tightly than ever before”[1]Western Imperialism introduced Asia to new western technologies, philosophies, and commercial markets.Some could say that at the time the majority of East Asia was willing to accept the west’s intrusion, having a seemingly positive effect on the area. Originally Western Imperialism in Asia was intended for establishing new colonies, but in time it became way to secure new commercial markets for western made products and raw materials to feed back to their industrial industries[2]. “In eighteenth-century wave of westernization foreshadowed the current phenomenon of globalization in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries”[3].By the 19th century, there was vast western imperialism throughout Asia; this is when westernization and imperialism began to take a negative turn ecologically for both Asia and the West. It was the large military presences used reinforce Imperialism throughout the world that put financial stress on many western nations. The overall cost of keeping up a foreign military and governments, and the time and money put into reinforcing them, left a financial burden on the West.

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The Chinese did not buy enough western products to counterbalance the flow of income leaving western markets.The west even put money into schools and institutions for Asians to learn western knowledge, and it was this mistake that made it only a matter of time before these suppressed societies used that knowledge to break free from western imperialism, Some Asian nations developed anti-western/anti-imperialism sentiment, eventually leading to many outbursts of economical and political confrontations such as the Opium Wars, domestic rebellions, all the way to the 1911 Revolution. In East Asia, the peak period of Westernization actually did not arrive until the early 20th century, but the deep forces underlying these changes had intruded much earlier[4]. The ecological and political effects of imperialism were different throughout the world, and led to the disruption and dislocation of many small societies throughout East Asia and the rest of the world, Europeans basically drew haphazard and illogical lines on their colonial maps of East Asia to establish their own territories, built massive manufacturing factories, and disrupted East Asia’s’ natural territories and pristine environment; the traditional societies were replaced by European businessmen, European militia, and investors.At first when it occurs it may seem to be positive effect, but in the long run, for example in this case it was a negative effect, but by the end of the 20th century the West was left with a large monetary deficit, and East Asia suffered with basically a dictatorship from the West, both were left with an up and coming war on their hands. Colonies in East Asia were heavily exploited and were given no rights to do anything, even though the West gave them modern culture.Colonies inside colonies would fight because they wanted independence and have their own government and rule.

There were many ethnics group that had nationalistic feelings but could not accomplish anything and become a free nation because of Imperialism. In conclusion, there were many pros and cons of imperialism for both East Asia and the West. In my opinion both the West and East Asia suffered mostly negative effects of Westernization and imperialism. Works Cited Michael Schroeder.The Twentieth Century and Beyond: A Global History. McGraw-Hill Companies,Inc. , 2007. Holocombe, Charles.

A History of East Asia: From the Origins of Civilization to the Twenty-First Century. Cambridge University Press, 2010. ——————————— [ 1 ]. Holcombe, A History of East Asia, 191. [ 2 ]. Goff, Moss, Terry, Upshur, the 20th Century: A Brief Global History, 68.

[ 3 ]. Holcombe, A History of East Asia, 191. [ 4 ]. Holcombe, A history of East Asia, 191.


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