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Political Continuities and Discontinuities in the World between the Colonial Period and the Present - Term Paper Example

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Name of the of the Concerned Professor History and Political Science 5 October 2011 Political Continuities and Discontinuities in the World between the Colonial Period and the Present Introduction There is no denying the fact that nothing in this world exists in isolation…
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Political Continuities and Discontinuities in the World between the Colonial Period and the Present
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"Political Continuities and Discontinuities in the World between the Colonial Period and the Present"

Download file to see previous pages In a simplistic perspective, colonialism pertained to the acquisition, perpetuation, and management of the overseas territories referred to as colonies by the people from other countries, most commonly happening to be denizens of the Western world. Colonialism was a process by which the people of a Western country established sovereignty over a foreign land and the colonizers went to a great length to alter the politics, social norms, culture and economic dynamics of that colony to strictly suit their vested interests and designs (Wesseling 1997, p. 29). Inequality was indeed the basis of colonialism and the inequality between the colonizing nation and the colony and between the colonizers and the natives was the crux of all the colonial logic. Colonialism did have a multidimensional impact on the individual rights, politics, cultural norms, economics and religion of the colonized nations and gave way to institutions and concepts like slavery, economic exploitation, religious enforcement and ethnic alienation. Though these norms and concepts have greatly ceased to exist in a strictly colonial form, they indeed tend to continue in altered forms and designs in the contemporary times. This paper intends to trace the continuities and discontinuities associated with these institutions and concepts in a current perspective. Slavery Colonialism relied for its political and economic sustenance on the subjugation and exploitation of the colonized. Slavery was an immensely unfortunate and inhuman aspect of colonialism that tended to dehumanize the people from colonized lands to run the economic machinery of the colonial nations (Walvin 1994, p. 7). The essential essence of slavery in the colonial times was that it methodically degraded the culture, traditions, social institutions and religions of the colonized races to consider them equal to being animals. The colonial forces had to somehow justify the exploitation of subjugated races as slaves, and the one plausible way of doing so was to prove and establish that the people from colonized races were inferior to the Europeans. The foundations of slavery and the slave trade were laid in the beginning of colonialism and the commensurate rise of mercantile powers (Walvin 1994, p. 56). Slavery was utterly devastating for the colonized races in a long term context as it significantly shrunk their populations, made the colonized lands and races more vulnerable to and dependant on colonial powers, decimated any chances of modernization of the enslaved races and brought far reaching political consequences, whose reverberations could even be heard in the present times. The institution of slavery devastated farming and industry in the colonized nations. There is no denying the fact that the institution of slavery in its colonial context, where the individuals from the enslaved races were owned and managed by the Western vested interests has seized to exist in the present times. However, it goes without saying that the historical momentum that accompanied colonialism and imperialism and the accompanying institutions and practices like slavery still continue to shape the present world in ways and forms that is utterly disturbing and annoying. It would not be wrong to say that there are far greater numbers of slaves serving the cause of the Western economies today than that existed during the zenith of slavery. Today the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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