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Modern Imperalism(The british Empire) - Essay Example

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………………… ………………… Building an Empire: Why Did Britain Invade Egypt in 1881? 1. Introduction Having presumably started with the first voyages of exploration in the North Atlantic around 1550 – whether inspired by the hope of finding a shortcut to the Indian Ocean, or by the fish-rich waters near Newfoundland – the idea of exploring, and consequently planting a settlement in new lands occupied the English monarchs and ruling elites for centuries (Lloyd 3-25)…
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Download file to see previous pages Being often dubbed “internal colonialism”, those relationships, according to Levine, did little, if anything, to narrow the gap between the rich and the poor, but exploited the divide for colonial ends (11). Insofar as the poor had found a solution, although not always an easy one, to their problems, migrating in large numbers from their impoverished regions into distant lands, the eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British Empire is largely considered “a significantly Scottish enterprise” (Levine 11). On the other hand, as Judd points out, the primary motive and most powerful drive behind the establishment of the Empire and its global growth was the “desire for profitable trade, plunder and enrichment” (3). Thus, having served many useful purposes, besides bringing wealth to a substantial part of the British population, the Empire was seen as both “a mainstay” of the restored Stuart monarchy after the period of republican rule known as “the Commonwealth and Protectorate” and the stabilising factor in “the post-revolutionary Britain of the late seventeenth century” (Judd 3-4). ...
d been perceived as “underwriting the nation’s future in a variety of ways”, including as “a means of uniting the British people in a common cause, a means of “inspiring a sense of international mission”, as well as a “device to blunt the edge of class warfare and egalitarian philosophies”; most notably, however, the Empire helped boost both the confidence of the individual and the nation, stifling fears of degeneration and decline. (Judd 4-5). This essay is intended to review the reasons for the British invasion in Egypt in 1882, including such as the situation in Europe, imperial geopolitics, commercial and strategic interests, as well as domestic economic concerns due to the pressure of increased international competition. The essay argues that the invasion was necessitated by a cocktail of factors, whose relative weigh varied with each stage of the British involvement. 2. Historical Background Porter point out that the British Empire significantly changed over the nineteenth century; thus, the West Indian islands rapidly lost their relative importance in the British trade after 1815, whereas the westward extension of Canada to the Pacific, along with the emergence of six colonies in Australia, transformed not only altered the pattern of investment distribution within the Empire, but also created a number of “self-governing, self-confident ‘settler capitalist societies’”, which generated nearly “16.5 per cent of Britain’s overseas trade” (Porter 5). Despite the changes, India, which underwent a consolidation of the British control over its territories between 1819 and 1870 – remained of “paramount importance in any assessment of Imperial assets” (Porter 5-6). This expansion, in turn, brought about other significant developments, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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