Guest Author - Rebecca Graf
If industrialization had not developed as it did in Europe, the rush for Africa would not have occurred in the manner it did. The need for resources would not have had France, Britain and other nations competing to get more land and control of more resources if the sudden demand was not there. This does not say that Imperialism would not have occurred, but the strength of it would have been much less. Demand for more material items had Europen looking beyond its borders for more at a price they could more than live with.
With Industrialization, Europe found more areas, Africa, China, and other places, to serve them: “To seek another’s profit, And work another’s gain.” (1) Imperialism became part of being a European power. Yet the results of Industrialization was not just found on other continents such as Africa. It was found in the home countries as the need for labor, another needed resource, had more people moving to the urban areas. The need for labor was so great that even children were put into the labor force. The freedom from the government that revolutions sought to obtain was handed over to the economy and was lost once again. Europe was finding that they were not under the thumb of just monarchs and the aristocracy. They were under all of society’s thumb, their own desires for more. What many during the revolution longed for did not exist. There is no true freedom as many sought. Utopian societies do not exist because mankind would be in them and the greed from man is too big. The greed for more that new developments could bring pushed the nations to look beyond their own borders and take away more freedom to achieve those goals. Imperialism was driven by Industrialization which made a mockery of the blood shed during the revolutions. Greed and power led Europe to Africa and changed the continents entire history.
(1) Rudyard Kipling, “The White Man’s Burden,” Modern History Source Book, Fordham University, 1899, http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/kipling.asp.