European colonialism

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pages: 651 words: 135,818

China into Africa: trade, aid, and influence by Robert I. Rotberg

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barriers to entry, BRICs, colonial rule, corporate governance, Deng Xiaoping, energy security, European colonialism, failed state, global supply chain, global value chain, income inequality, Khartoum Gordon, labour market flexibility, land reform, megacity, microcredit, offshore financial centre, out of africa, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, RAND corporation, Scramble for Africa, South China Sea, special economic zone, structural adjustment programs, trade route, Washington Consensus

Yet, significant divergences from colonialism as it was experienced in Africa—such as China’s fundamental respect for the sovereignty of African states; its active nurturing of relations with African states in international fora; and its interest in African people as consumers rather than laborers—suggest that China and Africa are engaging in postcolonial relations of interdependency, however economically imbalanced these relations may be. A Chinese “Scramble for Africa?” Geopolitical and Macroeconomic Factors Referring to China’s investments and involvement in Africa from 1996 to 2006 as China’s “Scramble for Africa,” critical observers draw a clear comparison between China and European colonial powers of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.3 Several macroeconomic and geopolitical factors that propelled the European “scramble” for Africa also appear to be at work in China’s recent engagement on the continent. During the European colonial era, as during the past decade of Chinese activity, the objective of external powers in Africa was to gain economic and 04-7561-4 ch4.qxd 9/16/08 4:11 PM Page 67 Engaging Postcolonial Interdependencies 67 political advantage for the interventionist power.4 This overriding reality offers preliminary evidence that China’s current engagement with Africa is (neo)colonial: in this basic analysis, China uses its power to influence relatively weaker African economic and political systems in its own interest.

In an ironic twist, as soon as China systematically withdrew its imports from the South African textile and apparel markets, the void was filled not by rejuvenated South African products but by cheap imports from Bangladesh and Vietnam, suggesting that in the twenty-first century Africa is being buffeted by the broader challenges of globalization, rather than by specific competition from China.16 Utilization of the African labor force marks another significant difference between China’s contemporary investment and European colonial activities in Africa. During the colonial period, European states leaned heavily on African peasant labor for the extraction of colonial wealth. By means of ruthless campaigns of forced and poorly paid labor, colonial states throughout the continent 04-7561-4 ch4.qxd 9/16/08 4:11 PM Page 72 72 stephanie rupp coerced able-bodied adults to undertake arduous work to fill the colonial cof-fers. The cardinal rule of colonial economics was that each colony had to pay for itself; colonial officials were systematic in collecting taxes from African producers to underwrite their subjugation. Hut and capitation taxes necessitated the procurement or production of resources that could be sold for hard (always European) currency. In many regions of Africa, European colonial officials applied notoriously brutal measures to ensure the collection of taxes.

Thus, while the Chinese government has made a concerted effort to extend a degree of socioeconomic assistance as part of its partnership with African nations, its state-centered approach has resulted in a fundamental decoupling of these programs from the often rural communities 04-7561-4 ch4.qxd 9/16/08 4:11 PM Page 77 Engaging Postcolonial Interdependencies 77 that would most benefit from them, and the people whose lives are directly affected by the presence of Chinese extractive industries. In the Cultural Arena China’s cultural approach to engaging Africa diverges from the European colonial model of cultural paternalism. Fundamentally, China is not driven by a “civilizing mission” to reform and save African individuals from their perceived primitivity. Unlike attempts by French colonial authorities to create “Frenchmen” from their African subjects by imparting French language, eti-quette, and habits, Chinese authorities have no interest in transforming Africans into “Chinamen.” European colonial attitudes were paradoxical: paternalistic attempts to bring “civilized” ways of life to African subjects were debasing, even as this cultural engagement signaled the shared essence of humanity and fraternité.


pages: 230 words: 62,294

The Coffee Book: Anatomy of an Industry From Crop to the Last Drop by Gregory Dicum, Nina Luttinger

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California gold rush, clean water, corporate social responsibility, cuban missile crisis, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, European colonialism, Honoré de Balzac, illegal immigration, land reform, land tenure, open economy, price stability, Ray Oldenburg, The Great Good Place

Coffee, however, was already firmly entrenched in German habits, and it managed to survive the various taxations, prohibitions, and general suppression exercised against its use. Today, in fact, Germany is the world’s third largest coffee consumer. Colonialism and the Spread of the Bean Beginning in the early 1700s, under the control of a handful of colonial powers, coffee cultivation increased dramatically throughout the tropics over the ensuing centuries. For most European colonial powers, coffee was a dream crop: a habit-forming, high-value tropical product that traveled well, with a ready market back home. Accompanying its expansion was a litany of cruelly inhumane and rapacious practices used for cultivating the bean, practices that indelibly scarred the landscapes and peoples unfortunate enough to be associated with the crop. Massive forest clearing and slavery were the seeming requisites behind growing coffee in virgin colonial lands, and the forces unleashed in this process have not yet played themselves out.

In 1773 citizens of Boston (“disguised” as natives) boarded English ships in the city harbor and threw the tea cargoes overboard, therein inspiring a lasting national affection for that other drink, coffee, which could be imported directly from French and Dutch colonies in the Caribbean. From that time, drinking coffee was viewed as a patriotic act, and drinking tea was seen as un-American. Curiously, then, whereas European colonialism seemed to dictate where coffee was cultivated and drunk, in the case of the United States, it was the end of colonialism, dramatically reflected in the Boston Tea Party, that marked coffee’s rise to prominence. The initiation of coffee as the American national drink in the late eighteenth century set the stage for a series of developments in the U.S. coffee trade that took place over the following two centuries—principally, the growth of a coffee trade infrastructure that served to smooth the flow of beans and bucks between producing and consuming nations.

This infrastructure included the centralization of the coffee roasting industry, technological innovations facilitating higher yields, increasingly efficient transport mechanisms, and geopolitical developments favoring the growth of symbiotic relationships between the United States and key producing countries. Later conglomeration of roasters into multinational corporations and the growth of Brazil and Colombia as the primary powers behind coffee production both echo some of the themes found in coffee’s early European colonial history—namely, the ongoing struggle for monopolistic control and regulation of a sector capable of generating tremendous revenues and power. The attendant social and ecological costs of the commerce in coffee, however, were also globalized. Increasingly powerful, the roasting corporations eventually became nearly indistinguishable from government in matters of coffee as they worked closely together to ensure that trade agreements and policies aligned with their own agendas.


pages: 497 words: 144,283

Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization by Parag Khanna

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1919 Motor Transport Corps convoy, 2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, 3D printing, 9 dash line, additive manufacturing, Admiral Zheng, affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, amateurs talk tactics, professionals talk logistics, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Asian financial crisis, asset allocation, autonomous vehicles, banking crisis, Basel III, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, borderless world, Boycotts of Israel, Branko Milanovic, BRICs, British Empire, business intelligence, call centre, capital controls, charter city, clean water, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, complexity theory, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, credit crunch, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, cuban missile crisis, data is the new oil, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deglobalization, deindustrialization, dematerialisation, Deng Xiaoping, Detroit bankruptcy, diversification, Doha Development Round, edge city, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, energy security, ethereum blockchain, European colonialism, eurozone crisis, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, family office, Ferguson, Missouri, financial innovation, financial repression, forward guidance, global supply chain, global value chain, global village, Google Earth, Hernando de Soto, high net worth, Hyperloop, ice-free Arctic, if you build it, they will come, illegal immigration, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, informal economy, Infrastructure as a Service, interest rate swap, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, Jaron Lanier, John von Neumann, Julian Assange, Just-in-time delivery, Kevin Kelly, Khyber Pass, Kibera, Kickstarter, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, LNG terminal, low cost carrier, manufacturing employment, mass affluent, megacity, Mercator projection, microcredit, mittelstand, Monroe Doctrine, mutually assured destruction, New Economic Geography, new economy, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, oil rush, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, openstreetmap, out of africa, Panamax, Peace of Westphalia, peak oil, Peter Thiel, Plutocrats, plutocrats, post-oil, post-Panamax, private military company, purchasing power parity, QWERTY keyboard, race to the bottom, Rana Plaza, rent-seeking, reserve currency, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Scramble for Africa, Second Machine Age, sharing economy, Shenzhen was a fishing village, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, six sigma, Skype, smart cities, Smart Cities: Big Data, Civic Hackers, and the Quest for a New Utopia, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, sovereign wealth fund, special economic zone, spice trade, Stuxnet, supply-chain management, sustainable-tourism, TaskRabbit, telepresence, the built environment, Tim Cook: Apple, trade route, transaction costs, UNCLOS, uranium enrichment, urban planning, urban sprawl, WikiLeaks, young professional, zero day

Now India can leverage China’s infrastructure to more efficiently deliver its own projects for Sri Lanka, from railways to housing, and use the island as a reliable back office and outsourcing site for call centers and car part assembly for the huge south Indian market of 300 million people. The Indian Ocean is once again the epicenter of competitive connectivity. In the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, India’s coastal kingdoms haggled with European colonial merchants to get the most favorable terms for carrying their goods to far-off markets. But whereas Sri Lanka became a European colony from the fifteenth century onward, this time it is prepared to resist any Chinese overextension beyond the projects that are mutually beneficial—armed with Chinese weapons. ATLANTIC CITIES The competition to shape maritime trade routes has become as intense in the Atlantic as in the Indian or Pacific Ocean. When the Panama Canal opened in 1914, it devastated Chile’s lovely colonial port of Valparaíso, where ships no longer needed to dock on their way around the Strait of Magellan at the tip of South America.

As the sociologist Christopher Chase-Dunn has shown, today’s world civilizational network has expanded through the interactions of once discrete regional and cultural systems, with waves of deepening connectedness launched by the confluence of new technologies, sources of capital, and geopolitical ambitions. Both the Arab conquerors of the mid-first millennium C.E. and the Mongols of the thirteenth century leveraged their organized mobility to establish vast empires. The Crusades and the Commercial Revolution of the late Middle Ages enabled the flourishing of maritime commerce and set the stage for centuries of European colonialism during which most of the world’s territory was mapped and claimed. Maps 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 13, corresponding to this chapter, appear in the map insert. Globalization surged as empires expanded their connections: the fifteenth- and sixteenth-century Iberian (Spanish and Portuguese) voyages and the seventeenth-century Dutch and eighteenth-century British East India companies.

But African states won’t survive at all without basic physical infrastructure. What will make the difference between celebrating independence and achieving success in Africa is not just political nation building but physical state building—both within and across borders. Africa has never had a time-out period to pause and decide how to best organize itself without outside interference. Its geopolitical complexity is the result of the layering of two centuries of European colonialism, a dozen major independence movements after World War II, the Cold War maneuverings that supported some of them while thwarting others, and the globalization of its commodities industries, which has brought in powerful foreign supply chain operators. Many of Africa’s interstate boundaries are visible only if one overlays the geometric grid of latitude and longitude, which European colonialists used rather than any sensible respect for cultural geography to draw the continent’s many straight-line borders.


pages: 828 words: 232,188

Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy by Francis Fukuyama

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Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Andrei Shleifer, Asian financial crisis, Atahualpa, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, blood diamonds, British Empire, centre right, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, colonial rule, conceptual framework, crony capitalism, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Snowden, Erik Brynjolfsson, European colonialism, facts on the ground, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, first-past-the-post, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Francisco Pizarro, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, Gini coefficient, Hernando de Soto, Home mortgage interest deduction, income inequality, invention of the printing press, iterative process, knowledge worker, land reform, land tenure, life extension, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, means of production, Menlo Park, Mohammed Bouazizi, Monroe Doctrine, moral hazard, new economy, open economy, out of africa, Peace of Westphalia, Port of Oakland, post-industrial society, Post-materialism, post-materialism, price discrimination, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Scientific racism, Scramble for Africa, Second Machine Age, Silicon Valley, special economic zone, stem cell, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail, trade route, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, women in the workforce, World Values Survey

The British, in prosecuting the Hut tax war in Sierra Leone, hanged ninety-six tribal chiefs whom they blamed for the insurrection.5 European colonial officials often behaved like petty tyrants, dispensing justice (or injustice) arbitrarily with few checks on their power. Consider the following vignette from German-controlled Cameroon, where the “imperial chancellor of the protectorate, Leist, had the wives of Dahomey soldiers whipped in the presence of their husbands, which resulted in December 1893 in a revolt of the soldiers. He had female convicts brought to him from the prison at night for his sexual gratification. He was brought before a disciplinary council and condemned to be transferred to an equivalent post, with a loss of seniority, for ‘an error in the cause of duty.’”6 Indeed, an entire academic discipline devoted to exposing the horrors of European colonialism emerged in the late twentieth century, which sought to explain how contemporary Africa’s many problems are rooted in the colonial experience.

The most successful non-Western countries today are precisely those that had the most developed indigenous institutions prior to their contact with the West. The complex reasons for different development paths can be seen most vividly in the contrast between sub-Saharan Africa and East Asia, the worst- and best-performing regions of the world with respect to economic development over the past half century. Sub-Saharan Africa never developed strong indigenous state-level institutions prior to its contact with the West. When the European colonial powers began the “scramble for Africa” in the late nineteenth century, they soon discovered that their new colonies were barely paying for the cost of their own administration. Britain in response adopted a policy of indirect rule, which justified minimal investment on its part in the creation of state institutions. The terrible colonial legacy was thus more an act of omission than of commission.

On the contrary, there reigns in Asia a servile spirit, which they have never been able to shake off, and it is impossible to find in all the histories of that country a single passage which discovers a freedom of spirit; we shall never see anything there but by the excess of slavery. Other political theorists, from Aristotle to Rousseau, have argued that climate and geography had an effect in shaping the nature of political institutions. By the second half of the twentieth century, however, when the European colonial empires were being disbanded and countries of the developing world were emerging as independent states, this line of reasoning began to fall out of favor. This was particularly true of arguments having to do with the effects of climate on national character and consequently development. Many of Montesquieu’s views on the differences between courageous inhabitants of northern climates and pleasure-seeking but indolent southerners were dismissed as crude stereotyping or racist prejudice.


pages: 481 words: 121,300

Why geography matters: three challenges facing America : climate change, the rise of China, and global terrorism by Harm J. De Blij

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agricultural Revolution, airport security, Anton Chekhov, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, British Empire, colonial exploitation, complexity theory, computer age, crony capitalism, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, Eratosthenes, European colonialism, F. W. de Klerk, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global village, illegal immigration, Internet Archive, John Snow's cholera map, Khyber Pass, manufacturing employment, megacity, Mercator projection, out of africa, RAND corporation, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, South China Sea, special economic zone, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, UNCLOS, UNCLOS

I'm always fascinated to read in our professional journals what they're discovering, and as I used to tell my students, the Age of Discovery may be over, but the era of geographic discovery never will be. THE SPATIAL SPECIALIZERS The stirring story of geography's early emergence, its Greek and Roman expansion, its European diversification, and its global dissemination is a saga of pioneering observation, heroic exploration, inventive mapmaking, and ever-improving interpretation, discussed in fascinating detail by the discipline's leading historian (Martin, 2005). Long before European colonialism launched the first wave of what today we call globalization, indigenous geographers were drawing maps and interpreting landscapes from Korea to the Andes and from India to Morocco. Later, geographic philosophy got caught up in European nationalism, and various "schools" of geography—German, French, British—came to reflect, and even to support and justify, national political and strategic aspirations including expansionism, colonialism, and even Nazism.

African traditional societies hunted for food or for ceremonial reasons, but not for entertainment or amusement. The notion of killing for fun and fashion was introduced by Europeans. Hindu society and religious culture in India are more protective of the natural world than many others. The extermination and near extermination of many species of animals in India took place during (Muslim) Moghul and European colonial times. Malevolent destruction of the environment continues in various—indeed many—forms today, ranging from the deliberate spilling of oil and setting of oil fires by Iraqis during the 1991 conflict over Kuwait, to the mercury poisoning of Amazonian streams by Brazilian gold miners. For the first time in human history, however, the combined impacts of humanity's destructive A FUTURE GEOGRAPHY OF HUMAN POPULATION 103 and exploitative actions are threatening the entire Earth's biodiversity.

Three of these four states will determine the course of events, and it is China's historic durability and Britain's unification of India that have brought us to this momentous prospect. RED STAR RISING: CHINA'S GEOPOLITICAL GAUNTLET Napoleon, who knew a thing or two about empires and imperialism, is supposed to have remarked that China was a giant asleep, and that whoever woke it up would regret doing so. In the two centuries that followed, European colonial powers shook China's lethargic rulers, Japanese armies jolted the Chinese heartland, and Soviet ideologues got in bed with their Maoist counterparts. But China outlasted the colonialists, ousted the Japanese, and outdid their Stalinist advisors' communist fervor, all without entering the global stage. Nor did the Chinese retaliate against the Europeans, even allowing the British to reassert themselves in postwar Hong Kong.


pages: 650 words: 203,191

After Tamerlane: The Global History of Empire Since 1405 by John Darwin

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agricultural Revolution, Atahualpa, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, British Empire, Cape to Cairo, colonial rule, Columbian Exchange, cuban missile crisis, deglobalization, deindustrialization, European colonialism, failed state, Francisco Pizarro, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, joint-stock company, Khartoum Gordon, laissez-faire capitalism, land reform, Mahatma Gandhi, Malacca Straits, mutually assured destruction, new economy, New Urbanism, oil shock, open economy, price mechanism, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, spice trade, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade

America exerted a powerful fascination for the European imagination, even if one strand of scientific thought regarded this ‘new’ continent as a harsh and hostile environment in which human physique displayed strong degenerative tendencies.52 What excited Europeans was the belief that they had both the right and the means to ‘make’ or remake America in Europe’s image, or even as an improved version of the old continent. This intellectual imperialism derived in part from the ease with which European rule had been established, and the completeness of the native collapse. But it was also founded upon a set of social and cultural assumptions famously expressed by John Locke. It was the Amerindians’ failure to develop a system of property that Europeans could recognize, so Locke argued, that justified the Europeans’ colonial land grab.53 But although Locke evidently regarded the Ottoman Empire as a hateful tyranny, and hoped for a revolt by the Christians it had conquered, he displayed no similar assurance that Europe had any title to the conquest and occupation of Africa and Asia – even if it had the means. In this, Locke, who was exceptionally widely read in the travel and geographical literature of his day,54 was probably reflecting the respectful tone of the most influential contemporary writing on the Ottoman, Safavid, Mughal and Chinese empires.

It was the one place where Europeans had established a permanent settlement long before the late nineteenth century. Since around 1700, Dutch-speaking farmers (Boers) had moved up from the Cape, slowly imposing their power on the African peoples they met. In the late 1830s they surged forward in a series of ‘treks’ to occupy the northern half of modern South Africa, the plains of the ‘highveld’. After 1870 this localized brand of European colonialism was suddenly energized by new mineral wealth – first diamonds, then gold. To the British government, overlords of the Cape since 1815, it was the perfect chance to steer a backward region away from its cycle of costly frontier wars. They wanted South Africa to be like Canada: a federal dominion, economically progressive, ‘British’ in outlook, and loyal to the empire. British trade would flourish, and the Cape would be safe for Britain’s Indian traffic.

East Asia’s future as a sphere of Western influence was at best uncertain. The European great powers had squabbled irritably over the share-out of territory and influence in North Africa and the Middle East. The size and scale of the American economy raised awkward questions over howfar American interests could be accommodated in a global economy centred on London and partitioned spatially between the European colonial powers. The frantic pace at which international trade and investment had been growing seemed to be easing off. Social unrest in Europe’s industrial economies threatened to clip the wings of the great-power governments and to rein in their global ambitions and strategies. But, before the influence of any of these changes could be felt internationally, world politics were transformed by a volcanic explosion, beginning in Europe but rapidly spreading to engulf every important state across the breadth of Eurasia.


pages: 392 words: 106,532

The Cold War: A New History by John Lewis Gaddis

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anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, British Empire, colonial rule, cuban missile crisis, Deng Xiaoping, European colonialism, full employment, land reform, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, mutually assured destruction, Potemkin village, Ronald Reagan, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, Sinatra Doctrine

In fact, though, the superpowers were finding it increasingly difficult to manage the smaller powers, whether allies or neutrals in the Cold War, while at the same time they were losing the authority they had once taken for granted at home. The weak were discovering opportunities to confront the strong. The nature of power was changing because the fear of power, as traditionally conceived, was diminishing. Mallets were indeed beginning to turn into flamingos, and balls into hedgehogs. I. THE FIRST signs that this was happening came with the decline and eventual demise of European colonialism, a process that began before the Cold War started, paralleled its early development, and only gradually affected its subsequent evolution. The European domination of the world dated from the 15th century, when Portugal and Spain first perfected the means of transporting men, weapons, and—without realizing it—germs across the oceans that had hitherto kept human societies apart.3 By the end of the 19th century, there was little territory left that was not controlled by Europeans or their descendants.

Nor did decolonization become a significant issue during the early Cold War. The Soviet Union remained anti-imperialist—how could it not be?—but advancing revolution in what was coming to be called the “third world” was less important to Stalin in the immediate postwar years than recovering from the war and attempting to spread his influence as widely as possible in Europe. The United States, for its part, was not about to defend European colonialism either. Its own history had begun in rebellion against an empire, and although the Americans had taken colonies of their own at the end of the 19th century—the Philippines being the most significant—they had never been comfortable with colonialism, preferring instead to exert their influence abroad by economic and cultural means. Neither Moscow nor Washington lamented the decline of European empires, therefore, nor did the power vacuums that were developing outside of Europe, as a result, at first preoccupy them.

Stalin had succumbed to these when he allowed Kim Il-sung to attack South Korea, while simultaneously encouraging Ho Chi Minh’s war against the French in Indochina. The old dictator knew little about the “third world,” however, and undertook no sustained effort to project Soviet influence into it. Khrushchev was more energetic: unlike Stalin, he loved to travel abroad and rarely missed a chance to do so. Among his favored destinations were the newly independent countries that were emerging from European colonial rule. “I’m not an adventurer,” Khrushchev explained, “but we must aid national liberation movements.”6 The Americans feared precisely this. Colonialism, they believed, was an antiquated institution that could only discredit the West in the regions where it had existed, while weakening its practitioners in Europe, where they needed to be strong. But the United States could not detach itself from its British, French, Dutch, and Portuguese allies just because they still maintained colonial possessions: restoring security and prosperity in postwar Europe was too important.

Guns, germs, and steel: the fates of human societies by Jared M. Diamond

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affirmative action, Atahualpa, British Empire, California gold rush, correlation does not imply causation, cuban missile crisis, discovery of the americas, European colonialism, Francisco Pizarro, Hernando de Soto, invention of movable type, invention of the wheel, invention of writing, James Watt: steam engine, Maui Hawaii, QWERTY keyboard, the scientific method, trade route

A L T H O U G H Y ALI'S QUESTION concerned only the contrasting life- styles of New Guineans and of European whites, it can be extended to a larger set of contrasts within the modern world. Peoples of Eurasian ori- gin, especially those still living in Europe and eastern Asia, plus those transplanted to North America, dominate the modern world in wealth and power. Other peoples, including most Africans, have thrown off European colonial domination but remain far behind in wealth and power. Still other peoples, such as the aboriginal inhabitants of Australia, the Americas, and southernmost Africa, are no longer even masters of their own lands but have been decimated, subjugated, and in some cases even exterminated by European colonialists. Thus, questions about inequality in the modern world can be reformu- lated as follows.

Thus, large-scale economic exchanges of food, between communities at different altitudes specializing in different types of food production, never developed in New Guinea. Such exchanges in the Andes, Alps, and Himalayas not only increased population densities in those areas, by providing people at all altitudes with a more balanced diet, but also promoted regional economic and political integration. For all these reasons, the population of traditional New Guinea never exceeded 1,000,000 until European colonial governments brought West- ern medicine and the end of intertribal warfare. Of the approximately nine world centers of agricultural origins that we discussed in Chapter 5, New Guinea remained the one with by far the smallest population. With a mere 1,000,000 people, New Guinea could not develop the technology, writing, and political systems that arose among populations of tens of millions in China, the Fertile Crescent, the Andes, and Mesoamerica.

The sole part of New Guinea where Europeans do not suffer from severe health problems is the highlands, above the altitudinal ceiling for malaria. But the highlands, already occupied by dense populations of New Guineans, were not reached by Europeans until the 1930s. By then, the Australian and Dutch colonial governments were no longer willing to open up lands for white settlement by killing native people in large numbers or driving them off their lands, as had happened during earlier centuries of European colonialism. The remaining obstacle to European would-be settlers was that Euro- pean crops, livestock, and subsistence methods do poorly everywhere in the New Guinea environment and climate. While introduced tropical American crops such as squash, corn, and tomatoes are now grown in small quantities, and tea and coffee plantations have been established in the highlands of Papua New Guinea, staple European crops, like wheat, barley, and peas, have never taken hold.


pages: 572 words: 134,335

The Making of an Atlantic Ruling Class by Kees Van der Pijl

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anti-communist, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Boycotts of Israel, Bretton Woods, British Empire, capital controls, collective bargaining, colonial rule, cuban missile crisis, deindustrialization, deskilling, diversified portfolio, European colonialism, floating exchange rates, full employment, imperial preference, Joseph Schumpeter, means of production, North Sea oil, Plutocrats, plutocrats, profit maximization, RAND corporation, strikebreaker, trade liberalization, trade route, union organizing, uranium enrichment, urban renewal, War on Poverty

Generously allowing both the United States and Britain their share in the Anglo-Saxon heritage, Streit proposed that the model of federation would be provided by the American Constitution, while Britain would contribute the tradition of representative government as such.7 The area which could be united on this basis in the more modest version of 1941 was reduced to the actual Anglo-Saxon world: North America, Britain, the white Dominions, Ireland, and the white population of South Africa.8 Like the ‘Grand Area’ projected by Council on Foreign Relations planners as necessary for the survival of liberal capitalism, Streit’s federal union was conceived basically in sphere-of-interest terms, although its potential for expansion was crucial to the scheme’s logic. Western Europe, Scandinavia, Latin America, but also in the long run, the European colonies — might gradually be incorporated until a truly world government was achieved. If, as Streit proclaimed, ‘despite all that the Nazis, the Stalinists and their stooges say, the Union policy (was) the opposite of imperialism’, the difference would have eluded most non-Anglo-Saxons.9 Reciprocating Streit’s vision in this respect, George Catlin may be singled out as the second major ideologue working for Atlantic unity on the eve of US entry into the war.

Significantly, however, of the series of American projects launched in the period, only one was meant to cover the world at large. Point Four, so named for being the fourth of a number of items announced by Truman in his Inaugural Address of January 1949, was an assistance programme to underdeveloped countries. It was meant, according to its author, ‘to enable [the underdeveloped countres] to help themselves to become growing, strong allies of freedom’. For this role, they needed both to emancipate themselves from European colonialism and to stop short of socialism; Point Four accordingly had ‘nothing in common with either the old imperialism of the last century or the new imperialism of the Communists’.70 When Point Four was enacted in 1950, its budget was ten and a half million dollars less than the minimum requested and, even with subsequent accretions, it remained extremely cheap compared to comprehensive assistance plans like Marshall Aid.

In the 1950s, threats had to make up for the absence of any positive plan for the world. ‘Strategically, it was a defensive age’, Calleo observes, ‘even if the tactics were often aggressive’.12 With respect to the periphery, the anti-communism and anti-colonialism which in the Marshall Plan had been depicted as a transcendent Free World strategy, now degenerated into rivalry as short-term considerations became the sole point of reference. At least until 1956, European colonial powers actively sought to reinforce and recapture imperial positions, encouraged by the defensive posture of the United States. In some cases, as in the Suez affair, the susceptibilities of Middle Eastern and African countries were taken into account by US policy-makers for tactical reasons. Broadly speaking, however, there was no comprehensive effort on the part of the United States to actively create viable social relations in the underdeveloped world which would secure its dependence on metropolitan capitalism in a post-colonial era.


pages: 279 words: 72,659

Gaza in Crisis: Reflections on Israel's War Against the Palestinians by Ilan Pappé, Noam Chomsky, Frank Barat

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Ayatollah Khomeini, Boycotts of Israel, British Empire, desegregation, European colonialism, facts on the ground, failed state, friendly fire, ghettoisation, Islamic Golden Age, New Journalism, price stability, too big to fail

Within the American evangelical scene, the voices of the “Merrills” weakened and were almost silenced by the vociferous sermons of the “Blackstones,” whose numbers increased enormously in the twentieth century. Their positive view of Zionism was reinforced by the growing tension between the missionaries and the Islamic religious establishments in the eastern Mediterranean. The missionaries, who once preached for liberation from European colonialism, hoped that American Christianity and not the Islamic tradition would become the leading light of the new nations, as indeed would become the case. In many ways, the second and third generations of missionaries became the first “Orientalists”—in the full negative meaning of the term. But even before Edward Said attracted our attention to this group, another Edward was warning, forty years before Said’s Orientalism appeared, of the dubious impact of the Orientalist missionary.

In his important work on the subject, Stephen Sizer has revealed how Christian Zionists have constructed a historical narrative that describes the Muslim attitude to Christianity throughout the ages as a kind of a genocidal campaign, first against the Jews and then against the Christians.12 Hence, what were once hailed as moments of human triumph in the Middle East—the Islamic renaissance of the Middle Ages, the golden era of the Ottomans, the emergence of Arab independence and the end of European colonialism—were recast as the satanic, anti-Christian acts of heathens. In the new historical view, the United States became St. George, Israel his shield and spear, and Islam their dragon. THE KING-CRANE LEGACY In the heart of Ohio lies the town of Oberlin. At the beginning of the nineteenth century it was still a typical Midwest American village, surrounded by infinite cornfields, away from the ivy towers of the East and West coasts.

The American president wished to exploit the results of the war by disintegrating the big colonial empires in the name of the right to independence and self-determination. In the Wilsonian vision, the Arab peoples, too, were entitled to the national liberation denied them during four hundred years of Ottoman rule. Wilson suspected that Britain and France wanted to replace Turkish imperialism with European colonialism. He therefore asked the Peace Conference in Versailles to send a commission of inquiry to the Arab world to ascertain the peoples’ aspirations there. The survey included Palestine, and King was his favored candidate to head the mission.13 King’s partner for the mission came from a very different place. In the northeastern part of Istanbul, the University of Bogazici overlooks the straits of the Bosphorus.


pages: 494 words: 28,046

Empire by Michael Hardt, Antonio Negri

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Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, collective bargaining, colonial rule, conceptual framework, discovery of the americas, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, feminist movement, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global village, Haight Ashbury, informal economy, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, labour mobility, late capitalism, low skilled workers, means of production, Monroe Doctrine, New Urbanism, open borders, Peace of Westphalia, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, Scramble for Africa, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, union organizing, urban planning, William of Occam

The declining sovereignty of nation-states and their increasing inability to regulate economic and cultural exchanges is in fact one of the primary symptoms of the coming of Empire. The sovereignty of the nation-state was the cornerstone of the imperialisms that European powers constructed throughout the modern era. By ‘‘Empire,’’ however, we understand something altogether different from ‘‘imperialism.’’ The boundaries defined by the modern system of nation-states were fundamental to European colonialism and economic expansion: the territorial boundaries of the nation delimited the center of power from which rule was exerted over external foreign territories through a system of channels and barriers that alternately facilitated and obstructed the flows of production and circulation. Imperialism was really an extension of the sovereignty of the European nation-states beyond their own boundaries.

Part of the SOVEREIGNTY OF THE NATION-STATE ‘‘modernizing’’ effects of the nation in subordinated countries has been the unification of diverse populations, breaking down religious, ethnic, cultural, and linguistic barriers. The unification of countries such as Indonesia, China, and Brazil, for example, is an ongoing process that involves overcoming innumerable such barriers—and in many cases this national unification was prepared by the European colonial power. In cases of diasporic populations, too, the nation seems at times to be the only concept available under which to imagine the community of the subaltern group—as, for example, the Aztlán is imagined as the geographical homeland of ‘‘la Raza,’’ the spiritual Latino nation in North America. It may be true, as Benedict Anderson says, that a nation should be understood as an imagined community—but here we should recognize that the claim is inverted so that the nation becomes the only way to imagine community!

For example, upon arriving in India and finding no historiography they could use, British administrators had to write their own ‘‘Indian history’’ to sustain and further the interests of colonial rule. The British had to historicize the Indian past in order to have access to it and put it to work. This British creation of an Indian history, however, like the formation of the colonial state, could be achieved only by imposing European colonial logics and models on Indian reality.24 India’s past was thus annexed so as to become merely a portion of British history—or rather, British scholars and administrators created an Indian history and exported it to India. This historiography supported the Raj and in turn made the past inaccessible to Indians as history. The reality of India and Indians was thus supplanted by a powerful representation that posed them as an other to Europe, a primitive stage in the teleology of civilization.

Falling Behind: Explaining the Development Gap Between Latin America and the United States by Francis Fukuyama

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Andrei Shleifer, Atahualpa, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, British Empire, business climate, Cass Sunstein, central bank independence, collective bargaining, colonial rule, conceptual framework, crony capitalism, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, first-past-the-post, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Francisco Pizarro, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, income per capita, labour market flexibility, land reform, land tenure, Monroe Doctrine, moral hazard, New Urbanism, oil shock, open economy, purchasing power parity, rent-seeking, Ronald Reagan, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, transaction costs, upwardly mobile, Washington Consensus

The explanation proposed by Acemoglu et al. for why figure 7.3 holds for former colonies is that Europeans created good institutions in some colonies, particularly places such as the United States, Canada, and Australia (what Alfred Crosby calls the neo-Europes), and bad ones in others (for example, Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa).27 These institutions had a strong tendency to persist over time. Why did different institutions develop in different European colonies? The The Latin American Equilibrium 173 simplest answer is that the economic institutions in various colonies were shaped by Europeans to benefit themselves. Moreover, because conditions and endowments differed between colonies, Europeans consciously created different economic institutions. There are several important empirical regularities connecting these initial conditions to current outcomes. Of particular importance are initial population density and the disease environment faced by Europeans. Figure 7.7 shows that there is a strong inverse relationship between population density in 1500 and current expropriation risk for former European colonies. Figure 7.8 shows that colonies where the disease environment was worse for Europeans also have worse economic institutions today.

As a final and telling piece of evidence, information about nominal wages and prices in central Mexico from Charles Gibson suggests that, in the century after the conquest, while the indigenous population collapsed, real wages were at best unchanged and probably fell.8 This fact is in startling contradiction to the Malthusian situation which supposedly characterized the premodern economy of Europe. Of course, during this period, the United States and Canada were also European colonies and, indeed, at the time of the declared independence of the United States in 1776, differences in prosperity among Mexico, Brazil, and the United States were minimal.9 The relative gap 162 Institutional Factors in Latin America’s Development 10,000,000 9,000,000 8,000,000 7,000,000 6,000,000 5,000,000 4,000,000 3,000,000 2,000,000 1,000,000 1520 1575 1625 1710 1778 1820 1840 1860 1880 1921 1950 1973 1988 1992 Mayan Population Total Guatemalan Population figure 7.1 Historical Estimates of Population in Guatemala.

The different colonial experiences of the United States versus Latin America is of course primary in explaining the final outcomes of the regions for virtually all of the authors in this volume. James Robinson, who made a strong case that institutions are what determine the gap, also argued that the different institutional inheritances are the result of the differing colonial legacies of the respective regions. For him, the European colonial intrusion interacted with the local environment to produce different institutions; where Europeans went to settle in large numbers (as in British America), they brought with them their own institutions of property rights and self-government; where they ended up ruling over large indigenous slave populations (as in Spanish America), they left no similar enduring institutions for the great mass of citizens within the society.

State-Building: Governance and World Order in the 21st Century by Francis Fukuyama

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Asian financial crisis, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, centre right, corporate governance, demand response, Doha Development Round, European colonialism, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Akerlof, Hernando de Soto, Nick Leeson, Potemkin village, price stability, principal–agent problem, rent-seeking, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, structural adjustment programs, technology bubble, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, transaction costs, Washington Consensus

The monopoly of legitimate power that states exercise allows individuals to escape what Hobbes labeled the “war of every man against every man” domestically but serves as the basis for conflict and war at an international level. The task of modern 1 2 state-building politics has been to tame the power of the state, to direct its activities toward ends regarded as legitimate by the people it serves, and to regularize the exercise of power under a rule of law. Modern states in this sense are anything but universal. They did not exist at all in large parts of the world like sub-Saharan Africa before European colonialism. After World War II decolonization led to a flurry of state-building all over the developing world, which was successful in countries like India and China but which occurred in name only in many other parts of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. The last European empire to collapse—that of the former Soviet Union—initiated much the same process, with varying and often equally troubled results.

Moreover, most countries in need of nation-building are failed states or other types of postconflict societies with far 38 state-building more severe governance problems than the average recipient of a conditional loan. If nation-building means the creation of self-sustaining state capacity that can survive once foreign advice and support are withdrawn, then the number of historical cases where this has happened successfully drops to a depressingly small handful. The most notable examples come from the history of European colonialism. The British above all succeeded in creating durable institutions in a number of their colonies, such as the Indian civil service and the legal systems in Singapore and Hong Kong that are widely credited as laying the basis for postindependence democracy in the first case and economic growth in the latter two. The Japanese as well left behind some durable institutions during their colonial period in Taiwan and Korea; despite the hatred of many Koreans for Japan, South Korea has sought to recreate many Japanese institutions, from industrial combines to one-party government.


pages: 233 words: 75,477

Surrender or Starve: Travels in Ethiopia, Sudan, Somalia, and Eritrea by Robert D. Kaplan

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Ayatollah Khomeini, citizen journalism, European colonialism, facts on the ground, land reform, out of africa, Ronald Reagan, the market place

“The trail was coated with the blood of thousands of Italian soldiers,” wrote Selassie. “Nevertheless, by 1889 all of Eritrea had been occupied, and Menelik [the Amhara king] had signed the Treaty of Ucciali, under which he recognized Italian rule over Eritrea.” The treaty demarcated the regional boundaries as they exist today. Selassie indicated that “two different imperial territories now existed side by side,” the one, Eritrea, governed by a white European colonial power; the other, Ethiopia, governed by a black African colonial power—the Amharas under Menelik—whose subjugation of the Tigreans to the north and of the Oromo people to the south was viewed by the indigenous inhabitants as no more preferable than any European-imposed tyranny. The fact that Eritreans, Tigreans, and Oromos viewed the black Amharas no differently than these three groups viewed the white European intruders is a truth that many in the liberal West may find hard to accept, but whose implications are crucial to a proper understanding of the present conflict.

All over western Sudan as well as in Ethiopia that summer, the United States was winning hearts and minds with similar feats. According to Brussels-based columnist Giles Merritt, writing in an October 1985 International Herald Tribune, 1985 was “the year when the United States went into Africa, one of the few remaining areas of the world it had managed to stay out of. In the past Washington has been glad to leave much of Africa under the influence of the former European colonial powers. But three million tons of U.S. food aid … changed that.” Merritt feared that such a generous outpouring of emergency aid was bound to get the United States involved in “the quagmires of African politics. The sacks of emergency grain and the seed that the Sudanese have named ‘Reagan' may prove as sure a hook as President Kennedy's handful of military advisors in Vietnam.” If only the columnist's fear had been borne out!


pages: 232

Planet of Slums by Mike Davis

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barriers to entry, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, British Empire, Brownian motion, centre right, clean water, conceptual framework, crony capitalism, declining real wages, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, edge city, European colonialism, failed state, Gini coefficient, Hernando de Soto, housing crisis, illegal immigration, income inequality, informal economy, Internet Archive, jitney, Kibera, labor-force participation, land reform, land tenure, low-wage service sector, mandelbrot fractal, market bubble, megacity, microcredit, New Urbanism, Ponzi scheme, RAND corporation, rent control, structural adjustment programs, surplus humans, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus, working poor

common trajectory: a regime of relatively slow, even retarded growth, then abrupt acceleration to fast growth in the 1950s and 1960s, with rural in-migrants increasingly sheltered in peripheral slums. Earlier in the twentieth century, the massive transfer of rural poverty to cities was prevented by the economic and political equivalents of city walls - both urban entry and, even more importantly, substantive urban citizenship were systematically withheld from large parts of the agrarian population. Keeping the Peasants Out A principal barrier, of course, was European colonialism which, in its most extreme form in the British colonial cities of eastern and southern Africa, denied native populations the rights of urban land ownership and permanent residence. The British, always the ideologues of divide and rule, feared that city life would "detribalize" Africans and foster anticolonial solidarities.3 Urban migration was controlled by pass laws, while vagrancy ordinances penalized informal labor.

In colonial slums like Medina (Dakar), Treichville (Abidjan) and Poto-Poto (Brazzaville), streets "were nothing but sand or mud alleyways instead of drainage there were only a few sewers, usually open or crudely covered with flag-stones; there was little or no water, with a few public pumps where queues waited from early in the morning. Public lighting was reserved for the European quarters. Overcrowding created a great hazard to health."10 Indeed, this almost universal refusal to provide even minimal sanitary infrastructures for the "native quarters" until the 1950s was more than stinginess: it.pointedly symbolized the lack of anyjiative "right to the city." But European colonialism was not the only international system of urban growth control. Although raised to power by peasant revolt, Asian Stalinism also tried to staunch the influx from the countryside. Initially the 1949 Chinese Revolution opened city gates to returning refugees and job-hungry peasant ex-soldiers. The result was an uncontrolled inundation of the cities: some 14 million people arrived in just four years.11 Finally, in 1953 the new regime dammed the rural flood with stringent controls over internal migration.


pages: 251 words: 76,868

How to Run the World: Charting a Course to the Next Renaissance by Parag Khanna

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Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, back-to-the-land, bank run, blood diamonds, borderless world, BRICs, British Empire, call centre, carbon footprint, charter city, clean water, cleantech, cloud computing, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, Deng Xiaoping, Doha Development Round, don't be evil, double entry bookkeeping, energy security, European colonialism, facts on the ground, failed state, friendly fire, global village, Google Earth, high net worth, index fund, informal economy, invisible hand, labour mobility, laissez-faire capitalism, Masdar, megacity, microcredit, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open economy, out of africa, private military company, Productivity paradox, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, reserve currency, Silicon Valley, smart grid, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, special economic zone, sustainable-tourism, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, The Wisdom of Crowds, too big to fail, trade liberalization, trickle-down economics, UNCLOS, uranium enrichment, Washington Consensus, X Prize

The trouble with historical analogies—with Japan and Germany widely rehearsed as appropriate prologues for the reconstruction of Iraq—is that they bear little resemblance to the circumstances of today’s failed states and deposed regimes. The details of demobilizing armies, reforming police forces, creating ethnic reconciliation programs, and jump-starting power plants and hospitals are unique aspects of modern state building: There is no template for them. Instead, we are mostly state-building in places where there never really was a state. There would be no state building to speak of were it not for the aggressive European colonialism that created the international system we take for granted today. For centuries, European colonizers fanned out across the planet for commercial gain and geopolitical advantage—along the way creating one world under their hierarchy. They forced insular societies such as China and Japan to accept their consulates, compelled the modernization of the Ottoman bureaucracy, and in the name of a mission civilisatrice created coherent administrative structures in India and Africa.

In all these ways, the new colonialists have become woven into the fabric of governance in weak states, preventing them from failing even further. There are clearly big differences between the old and new colonialism. As Tony Pipa, director of the NGO Leaders Forum, says, “Equating the two is like calling the Prius the new Hummer. They both get you from here to there, but the goals and values behind the design are completely different.” Unlike the previous European colonialism, which purposely sought to perpetuate dependency, the new colonialists want states to practice “responsible sovereignty” by which they protect their people and prevent threats from spilling over their borders.1 The new colonialism isn’t intentionally exploitative, condescending, or coercive—only unintentionally so. The new colonialists are certainly more committed to local ownership than either U.S. military occupations or traditional UN missions.


pages: 484 words: 120,507

The Last Lingua Franca: English Until the Return of Babel by Nicholas Ostler

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barriers to entry, BRICs, British Empire, call centre, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, Internet Archive, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, Machine translation of "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." to Russian and back, open economy, Republic of Letters, Scramble for Africa, statistical model, trade route, upwardly mobile

In Papua New Guinea, the proportion of worshippers is 61.8 percent, and in sub-Saharan Africa generally, direct impact has been serious. There, Christians (and mostly Protestants) are now in the majority in almost every country where English functions as lingua-franca.7 It is ultimately impossible to disentangle the long-term effects of the religious missionary pioneers from the later workings of the European colonial enterprise more generally; for example, schools that were originally mission foundations were often later incorporated as national institutions. Nonetheless, there are already more practicing Christians in Africa than on any other continent, and on current rates of growth, by the coming decade Africa will overtake Europe as the continent with most self-identifying Christians. This is some kind of a harvest for all that Evangelical planting.

This process created Bislama and Tok Pisin, now official languages in their own right (as well as widely spoken vernaculars) in Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea. When the sources are major languages that are widely known in their original forms, these creoles get little popular respect and are seen as somehow inferior alternatives to a properly learned language. This has happened a great deal on the margins of the great European colonial empires of the seventeenth to twentieth centuries. Languages such as Gullah in the southeastern USA, Haitian Creole French, Papiamentu (from Spanish or Portuguese in the southern Caribbean), spoken by marginal communities of uneducated people long treated as second-class, have been dismissed as no-account languages. But these attitudes do not survive in the long term. It is a respectable view* that the major modern Indo-European languages themselves (including, as a scattering of representative examples, German, Italian, Greek, Russian, Persian, Armenian, and Bengali) all owe their variety, which must go back at least three thousand years, to a common language that was repeatedly creolized in this way, through introduction to different populations all over Europeand the southwestern half of Asia.

There have been no institutions for Arabic, Hindi, Urdu, Malay, or Swahili, for example, despite their political and lingua-franca importance. Nor have any of the major nonindigenous users of European languages, such the USA, Canada, Mexico, or Brazil, seen value in getting into this game on behalf of their majority languages, surprising when one considers that the sheer scale of some of these states, once founded as European colonies, dwarfs the absolute size of their countries of origin. † Nations that have such languages may attempt to practice cultural diplomacy (as witness the defunct United States Information Agency, which functioned 1953–99), but if they do, they will focus on their own politics, arts, and society; they will not expect to gain sympathizers just by propagating their own language. For Arabic, such outside pressure as exists to motivate people to learn it comes from Islamic organizations rather than Arab states, and most of the actual teaching offered comes from neither, but rather from private companies in cities within the Arabic-speaking zone.


pages: 483 words: 134,377

The Tyranny of Experts: Economists, Dictators, and the Forgotten Rights of the Poor by William Easterly

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air freight, Andrei Shleifer, battle of ideas, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business process, business process outsourcing, Carmen Reinhart, clean water, colonial rule, correlation does not imply causation, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Deng Xiaoping, desegregation, discovery of the americas, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, Francisco Pizarro, fundamental attribution error, germ theory of disease, greed is good, income per capita, invisible hand, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John Snow's cholera map, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, M-Pesa, microcredit, Monroe Doctrine, oil shock, place-making, Ponzi scheme, risk/return, road to serfdom, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, urban planning, urban renewal, Washington Consensus, World Values Survey, young professional

This article thereby firmly required colonial powers to protect their colonial subjects against—themselves.57 When the United Nations published its first report on development in 1947, Economic Development in Selected Countries: Plans, Programmes and Agencies, it included plans for “British African Non-Self-Governing and Non-Metropolitan Territories” and “French African Overseas Territories.” The introduction to the report lumps together all “governments of the less developed countries,” including the European colonial rulers of these territories next to local rulers like those in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Poland, and Yugoslavia. The report declared that all members of this diverse group of autocrats, democrats, Stalinists, and colonizers shared the “ultimate aim in economic development” which “is to raise the national welfare of the entire population.”58 POSTWAR EMPIRE Was the new development justification for empire taken seriously after the war was over?

From the thirteenth through the nineteenth centuries, Fujianese traders migrated to Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines, Okinawa, Vietnam, Cambodia, Sumatra, Java, Malaya, Singapore, and the kingdom of Ayutthaya in what is today Thailand. Already by the seventeenth century they had muscled into the role of key middlemen in East–West trade (in addition to intra-East trade) by playing off the Dutch and the Spanish against each other, trading silk, porcelain, furniture, sugar, and metal wares.15 Yet more Fujianese migration happened between the 1860s and 1930s, as European colonial plantations (such as rubber in British Malaya and Dutch Indonesia) were looking for a reliable labor force. The network of Fujianese merchants already in place was happy to help out, recruiting coolie labor back in Fujian, who then moved permanently to Malaya, Singapore, and Indonesia. The coolie laborers’ descendants were then available also to join the next generation of merchants in the thriving regional Fujianese trading network.16 The advice of the development experts as “official development” began after 1949 was to emphasize national industrialization over international trade.

Aleppo would thrive on this trade for the next four centuries.24 The traders were a diverse group, including Venetians, English, French, Dutch, Arabic-speaking Muslims, Christian Syrians, Turkish-speaking Ottomans, Indians, Bukharans (from modern day Uzbekistan), Armenians, Sephardic Jews expelled from Portugal, Italy, and Spain, and Arabic Jews from all over the Levant.25 They traded goods like raw silk, wool, cotton, finished fabrics, camels and camel hair, gallnuts, pistachio nuts, and drugs and gums. They got these goods from northern Syria and the Syrian desert, southeastern Anatolia, Mosul, Iran, Diyarbakr, Arabia, and Basra. From Europe, the goods included woolens, raw metals, and other goods as diverse as firearms, clocks, paper, housewares, and chemical products, not to mention products of the European colonies such as dyes, spices, sugar, and coffee. From Aleppo, most of these goods were destined for re-export to cities in the interior, in Syria, Anatolia, Iraq, and Iran.26 The twentieth century was a series of nationalist disasters for Aleppo. After World War I, Aleppo got its first blow from the carving up of the Levant into the French colonies (called League of Nations “mandates”) of Syria (containing Aleppo) and Lebanon; the British colonies (mandates) of Palestine, Jordan, and Iraq; and independent Turkey.

Year 501 by Noam Chomsky

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anti-communist, Bartolomé de las Casas, Berlin Wall, Bolshevik threat, Bretton Woods, British Empire, capital controls, colonial rule, corporate governance, cuban missile crisis, declining real wages, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, European colonialism, experimental subject, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Howard Zinn, invisible hand, land reform, land tenure, means of production, Monroe Doctrine, non-tariff barriers, offshore financial centre, Plutocrats, plutocrats, price stability, Ralph Nader, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Simon Kuznets, strikebreaker, structural adjustment programs, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade liberalization, trickle-down economics, union organizing, War on Poverty, working poor

The same principles are amply illustrated in the 500 years of imperial crime and the way they enter history, a history sampled in the text below, persisting with little change to the present day. Part I Old Wine, New Bottles Chapter 1 “The Great Work of Subjugation and Conquest” The year 1992 poses a critical moral and cultural challenge for the more privileged sectors of the world-dominant societies. The challenge is heightened by the fact that within these societies, notably the first European colony liberated from imperial rule, popular struggle over many centuries has achieved a large measure of freedom, opening many opportunities for independent thought and committed action. How this challenge is addressed in the years to come will have fateful consequences. October 11, 1992 brings to an end the 500th year of the Old World Order, sometimes called the Colombian era of world history, or the Vasco da Gama era, depending on which adventurers bent on plunder got there first.

Reality itself is the “transcendent purpose” of the nation, which is indeed noble; the abuse of reality is the irrelevant factual record.3 The record is misleading if it keeps to the support for horrendous atrocities and fails to reveal the welcome accorded them when they are seen to be in a good cause, a leading feature of the 500-year conquest. The reaction to the US-directed atrocities in Central America in the past decade is one well-studied example. To illustrate how firmly this pillar of the traditional culture is in place, it would only be fitting to consider the earliest Asian outpost of European colonialism, the Dutch East Indies, during the era of US global management. 2. Securing the Anchor “The problem of Indonesia” is “the most crucial issue of the moment in our struggle with the Kremlin,” Kennan wrote in 1948. “Indonesia is the anchor in that chain of islands stretching from Hokkaido to Sumatra which we should develop as a politico-economic counter-force to communism” and a “base area” for possible military action beyond.

As noted earlier, it was not until the 1960s that the truth began to break through, eliciting scorn and protest from outraged loyalists.3 The Spanish effort to plunder the island’s riches by enslaving its gentle people were unsuccessful; they died too quickly, if not killed by the “wild beasts” or in mass suicide. African slaves were sent from the early 1500s, later in a flood as the plantation economy was established. “Saint Domingue was the wealthiest European colonial possession in the Americas,” Hans Schmidt writes, producing three-quarters of the world’s sugar by 1789, also leading the world in production of coffee, cotton, indigo, and rum. The slave masters provided France with enormous wealth from the labor of their 450,000 slaves, much as in the British West Indian colonies. The white population, including poor overseers and artisans, numbered 40,000.


pages: 540 words: 168,921

The Relentless Revolution: A History of Capitalism by Joyce Appleby

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Various combinations of these countries went to war against each other eight times between 1689 and 1815 for a total of sixty-three years.1 One major consequence of these hostilities was a sharp reduction in the intra-European trade that had grown substantially in the previous two centuries. Neighboring Great Britain and France, in particular, turned from each other as trading partners toward their overseas holdings. The wars themselves made raising revenue urgent, so heavy import tariffs became the order of the day. The various European colonies in the New World were expected to complement the economic needs of the mother country. The persistent warfare among European powers created a kind of catch-22. The warring countries needed the riches they extracted from Asia and the New World to support their wars, but the intense competition for control of these lucrative trades triggered more bellicosity. France and England confronted each other in five different spots around the globe: over cotton and silk in India, slaves on the west coast of Africa, sugar plantations in the Caribbean, Indian alliances in the Ohio River valley of the North American continent, and furs in the Hudson Bay area.

Of course the factories in the fields of the seventeenth-and eighteenth-century Caribbean sugar plantations and the silver mines of Mexico and Peru offered something of a template for the new capitalist thrust to make colonies centers of production. Governments had what companies lacked, the power to commandeer workers by extorting concessions from their compliant leaders or moving in with force where there was no recognized political order, as in much of sub-Saharan Africa. European colonies already existed on the coasts as supports to long-distance commerce. The untapped riches in the African interior stirred imperial designs. European countries began to scuffle over who would get what, with little thought of the people who lived there. Cupidity, curiosity, Christian proselytizing, and militant strong-arming came into play. Abuses, unacceptable at home, became common when capitalism moved outside its original borders.

See also David Levine, At the Dawn of Modernity: Biology, Culture, and Material Life in Europe after the Year 1000 (Berkeley, 2001). 4. Kenneth Pomeranz, The Great Divergence: China, Europe, and the Marking of the Modern World Economy (Princeton, 2000). The critical literature on this proposition is best covered in James M. Bryant, “The West and the Rest Revisited: Debating Capitalist Origins, European Colonialism, and the Advent of Modernity,” Canadian Journal of Sociology, 31 (2006). See also David Landes, “East Is East and West Is West,” in Maxine Berg and Kristine Bruland, eds., Technological Revolutions in Europe: Historical Perspectives (Northampton, MA, 1998), 19–38. For a more sympathetic response to Pomeranz, see P. H. H. Vries, “Are Coal and Colonies Really Crucial? Kenneth Pomeranz and the Great Divergence,” Journal of World History, 12 (2001). 5.


pages: 353 words: 98,267

The Price of Everything: And the Hidden Logic of Value by Eduardo Porter

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Asian financial crisis, Ayatollah Khomeini, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, British Empire, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, Cass Sunstein, clean water, Credit Default Swap, Deng Xiaoping, Edward Glaeser, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, Ford paid five dollars a day, full employment, George Akerlof, Gordon Gekko, guest worker program, happiness index / gross national happiness, housing crisis, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, income per capita, informal economy, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kenneth Rogoff, labor-force participation, laissez-faire capitalism, loss aversion, low skilled workers, Martin Wolf, means of production, Menlo Park, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, new economy, New Urbanism, pension reform, Peter Singer: altruism, pets.com, placebo effect, price discrimination, price stability, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, rising living standards, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, superstar cities, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, ultimatum game, unpaid internship, urban planning, women in the workforce, World Values Survey, Yom Kippur War, young professional

In many monogamous societies, daughters often represent nothing but a cost. Bride prices are rare among them. Instead, they feature dowries, payments from the family of the bride to the groom that are virtually unheard of in polygamous cultures. That’s probably why many traditional monogamous societies have been prone to female infanticide and feticide. Polygamy faded over the past two thousand years, first in Europe and then across much of the world, pushed by European colonial expansion. But it doesn’t seem to have been due to the opposition of women. The more likely reason is that men turned against it. One theory posits that economic development fostered monogamy because of the way it changed the reproductive goals of rich men. In less developed societies where wealth was mostly inherited, it made no sense to invest in educating one’s children. The purpose of mating was to have as many children as possible to improve the odds that a man’s genes would survive into the next generation.

These days workers draw almost 65 percent of the nation’s income in wages and benefits—about ten percentage points more than they did eighty years ago, when the government started measuring the statistic consistently. That kind of money seems like a fairly potent incentive for their employers to enslave them. So why don’t they? Perhaps we’ve learned to be repulsed by slavery. But the historical record suggests that societies’ choice of working conditions has less to do with values and morality, and more with the profitability of how labor is organized. From sixteenth-century Russia to the European colonies in the New World, the decision of whether to employ indentured or free workers has hinged on whether it is cheaper to pay a wage or to feed, clothe, and house slaves while paying for security to keep them enslaved. Throughout history, slavery was rare in subsistence economies, such as early hunter-gatherer societies where people produced just enough to stay alive. In early horticulturalist cultures, land was not productive enough to generate a surplus that would justify enslaving additional workers.


pages: 295 words: 92,670

1494: How a Family Feud in Medieval Spain Divided the World in Half by Stephen R. Bown

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Atahualpa, Bartolomé de las Casas, British Empire, charter city, Eratosthenes, European colonialism, Francisco Pizarro, Hernando de Soto, Peace of Westphalia, spice trade, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, UNCLOS

The island was never returned to Spain, despite the high language of the many treaties and documents attesting to Spanish exclusivity in the Caribbean; language in Europe was one thing, whereas actions across the ocean were another altogether. The Dutch West India Company was also gearing up its activities at this time, founding Manhattan as a base for assaults on Spanish shipping in the Caribbean. As Spanish sea power waned, other European colonies grew more prosperous. The vast mountains of bullion that paid for Spain’s prominence in Europe was only as secure as the ships that carried them thousands of miles across the Atlantic, through waters ringed by dangerous reefs, infested with pirates and privateers, and prone to disastrous and unpredictable storms. If anything, the plunder of Spanish ships and illegal trade in the West Indies became more common throughout the seventeenth century, once it became known that Europe’s most powerful nation was also its most vulnerable.

The Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques & Discoveries of the English Nation—Made by Sea or Overland to the Remote and Farthest Distant Quarters of the Earth at Any Time Within the Compasse of These 1600 Years. London: J.M. Dent & Sons, 1926 reprint. Hakluyt, Richard. Voyages of Drake and Gilbert: Select Narratives from the Principal Navigations of Hakluyt. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1909. Hanke, Lewis. The Spanish Struggle for Justice in the Conquest of America. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1949. Hart, Jonathan. Comparing Empires: European Colonialism from Portuguese Expansion to the Spanish-American War. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003. Hart, Jonathan. Empires and Colonies. Cambridge: Polity, 2008. Hawthorne, Daniel. Ferdinand Magellan. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1964. Hibbert, Christopher. The Borgias and Their Enemies, 1431–1519. New York: Harcourt, 2008. Johnson, Marion. The Borgias. London: Macdonald Futura, 1981. Joyner, Tim.


pages: 299 words: 19,560

Utopias: A Brief History From Ancient Writings to Virtual Communities by Howard P. Segal

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1960s counterculture, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, complexity theory, David Brooks, death of newspapers, dematerialisation, deskilling, energy security, European colonialism, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, future of journalism, garden city movement, germ theory of disease, Golden Gate Park, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, John von Neumann, knowledge economy, Louis Pasteur, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, Nicholas Carr, Nikolai Kondratiev, out of africa, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, union organizing, urban planning, War on Poverty, Whole Earth Catalog

He contends that the prevailing negative connotation of speed in relation to clocks, schedules, and Frederick Taylor’s stopwatch Scientific Management was gradually “rerouted into the excessive speed of individual pleasure.”67 164 Utopia Reconsidered The automobile was not the only invention to provide that pleasurable experience, but it transcended all others, allowing people “to feel modernity in their bones.”68 Duffy suggests (somewhat unconvincingly) that, as European colonial empires declined, experiencing speed at home replaced thrilling adventure abroad. These “speed demons” of roughly a century ago hardly saw themselves as leading slow-paced lives. The key point is how the world was perceived by ordinary people then as much as now. Unlike those ahistorical high-tech prophets, Duffy properly respects and reads the past in its own complex terms. To be sure, people who rode and witnessed early-nineteenthcentury railroads made similar statements about their own pace of change.

Post-colonial Critiques of Western Science and Technology as Measures of “Progress” A complementary critique of the utopian assumptions of Western science and technology derives from the growing “post-colonial studies” field that has emerged in recent decades. It is increasingly common for historians and other scholars to argue that Western science and technology, the commonly deployed measures of “progress” possibly leading to utopia, were utilized by European colonial powers to dominate their empires not only materially and financially (rather familiar themes) but also culturally and psychologically. The traditional condescension toward non-Western science and technology invariably reflects ignorance of the achievements in Arab lands and in China, among many other places, in the centuries before colonial empires began. Yet, as Michael Adas demonstrates in his Machines as the Measure of Men: Science, Technology, and Ideologies of Western Dominance (1989), the story is more complicated.


pages: 801 words: 242,104

Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond

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clean water, colonial rule, correlation does not imply causation, cuban missile crisis, Donner party, European colonialism, Exxon Valdez, illegal immigration, job satisfaction, means of production, new economy, North Sea oil, Piper Alpha, polynesian navigation, profit motive, South Sea Bubble, statistical model, Stewart Brand, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transcontinental railway, unemployed young men

In Haiti, more urgent than any of those just-mentioned consequences is the problem of the loss of wood for making charcoal, Haiti’s main fuel for cooking. The difference in forest cover between the two countries is paralleled by differences in their economies. Both Haiti and the Dominican Republic are poor countries, suffering from the usual disadvantages of most of the world’s other tropical countries that were former European colonies: corrupt or weak governments, serious problems of public health, and lower agricultural productivity than in the temperate zones. On all those counts, though, Haiti’s difficulties are much more serious than those of the Dominican Republic. It is the poorest country in the New World, and one of the poorest in the world outside of Africa. Its perennially corrupt government offers minimal public services; much or most of the population lives chronically or periodically without public electricity, water, sewage, medical care, and schooling.

Of course the system also suffers from an abundance of problems and a deficiency of funding, but it is nevertheless impressive for a poor country with other problems and priorities. Behind the reserve system stands a vigorous indigenous conservation movement with many non-governmental organizations staffed by Dominicans themselves, rather than foisted on the country by foreign advisors. All those dissimilarities in forest cover, economy, and natural reserve system arose despite the fact that the two countries share the same island. They also share histories of European colonialism and American occupations, overwhelmingly Catholic religion coexisting with a voodoo pantheon (more notably in Haiti), and mixed African-European ancestry (with a higher proportion of African ancestry in Haiti). For three periods of their history they were joined as a single colony or country. The differences that exist despite those similarities become even more striking when one reflects that Haiti used to be much richer and more powerful than its neighbor.

During the 1700s the Spanish colony had a low population, few slaves, and a small economy based on raising cattle and selling their hides, while the French colony had a much larger population, more slaves (700,000 in 1785, compared to only 30,000 in the Spanish part), a proportionately much lower non-slave population (only 10% compared to 85%), and an economy based on sugar plantations. French Saint-Domingue, as it was called, became the richest European colony in the New World and contributed one-quarter of France’s wealth. In 1795, Spain finally ceded its no-longer-valuable eastern part of the island to France, so that Hispaniola became briefly unified under France. After a slave rebellion broke out in French Saint-Domingue in 1791 and 1801, the French sent an army that was defeated by the slave army plus the effects of heavy losses to diseases.


pages: 753 words: 233,306

Collapse by Jared Diamond

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clean water, colonial rule, correlation does not imply causation, cuban missile crisis, Donner party, European colonialism, Exxon Valdez, illegal immigration, job satisfaction, means of production, new economy, North Sea oil, Piper Alpha, polynesian navigation, prisoner's dilemma, South Sea Bubble, statistical model, Stewart Brand, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transcontinental railway, unemployed young men

In Haiti, more urgent than any of those just-mentioned consequences is the problem of the loss of wood for making charcoal, Haiti's main fuel for cooking. The difference in forest cover between the two countries is paralleled by differences in their economies. Both Haiti and the Dominican Republic are poor countries, suffering from the usual disadvantages of most of the world's other tropical countries that were former European colonies: corrupt or weak governments, serious problems of public health, and lower agricultural productivity than in the temperate zones. On all those counts, though, Haiti's difficulties are much more serious than those of the Dominican Republic. It is the poorest country in the New World, and one of the poorest in the world outside of Africa. Its perennially corrupt government offers minimal public services; much or most of the population lives chronically or periodically without public electricity, water, sewage, medical care, and schooling.

Of course the system also suffers from an abundance of problems and a deficiency of funding, but it is nevertheless impressive for a poor country with other problems and priorities. Behind the reserve system stands a vigorous indigenous conservation movement with many non-governmental organizations staffed by Dominicans themselves, rather than foisted on the country by foreign advisors. All those dissimilarities in forest cover, economy, and natural reserve system arose despite the fact that the two countries share the same island. They also share histories of European colonialism and American occupations, overwhelmingly Catholic religion coexisting with a voodoo pantheon (more notably in Haiti), and mixed African-European ancestry (with a higher proportion of African ancestry in Haiti). For three periods of their history they were joined as a single colony or country. The differences that exist despite those similarities become even more striking when one reflects that Haiti used to be much richer and more powerful than its neighbor.

During the 1700s the Spanish colony had a low population, few slaves, and a small economy based on raising cattle and selling their hides, while the French colony had a much larger population, more slaves (700,000 in 1785, compared to only 30,000 in the Spanish part), a proportionately much lower non-slave population (only 10% compared to 85%), and an economy based on sugar plantations. French Saint-Domingue, as it was called, became the richest European colony in the New World and contributed one-quarter of France's wealth. In 1795, Spain finally ceded its no-longer-valuable eastern part of the island to France, so that Hispaniola became briefly unified under France. After a slave rebellion broke out in French Saint-Domingue in 1791 and 1801, the French sent an army that was defeated by the slave army plus the effects of heavy losses to diseases.


pages: 859 words: 204,092

When China Rules the World: The End of the Western World and the Rise of the Middle Kingdom by Martin Jacques

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Admiral Zheng, Asian financial crisis, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, credit crunch, Dava Sobel, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, discovery of the americas, Doha Development Round, energy security, European colonialism, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global reserve currency, global supply chain, illegal immigration, income per capita, invention of gunpowder, James Watt: steam engine, joint-stock company, Kenneth Rogoff, land reform, land tenure, Malacca Straits, Martin Wolf, Naomi Klein, new economy, New Urbanism, open economy, pension reform, price stability, purchasing power parity, reserve currency, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, special drawing rights, special economic zone, spinning jenny, Spread Networks laid a new fibre optics cable between New York and Chicago, the scientific method, Thomas L Friedman, trade liberalization, urban planning, Washington Consensus, Xiaogang Anhui farmers

One of the most remarkable examples was the huge resettlement of Sichuan province in the south-west, whose population had fallen to around half a million by 1681, but which reached 207 million in 1812 as a result of the movement of migrant-settlers, organized and orchestrated by the Qing dynasty.32 This process is still evident today, with the steady influx of Han migrants into Inner Mongolia, where they now constitute a very large majority, and into Tibet and Xinjiang, where they represent substantial minorities, possibly even a majority in the case of the latter. Resettlement has been a key tool in the process of Chinese expansion and Hanification. It is important, in this context, to distinguish between a land-based expansion like China’s and a maritime-based expansion such as those of the European empires of Britain and France. The European colonies never acquired any degree of permanence because, except in those cases where there was overwhelming white settlement, as for example in Australia and North America, it was impossible to assimilate races and cultures which, by virtue of place and distance, were entirely alien. This was quite different from China, which, because of its land-based expansion, always enjoyed the advantage of proximity, thereby enabling, if need be, the process of absorption and incorporation to take thousands of years.33 As a consequence, in terms of the consciousness of its multitudinous component groups, the Chinese empire is no longer an empire, except at its northern and especially north-western and western edges, with the population of these areas representing only 6 per cent of China’s total.34 China thus only confronts difference, for the most part, at its perimeter.

Though the proportion of China’s population who are internet users is far smaller than that in the United States, by 2008 the number of Chinese internet users had already overtaken the number of American users.29 Figure 44. Top ten internet languages, May 2008. Figure 45. World internet users, March 2008. THE CHINESE RACIAL ORDER For the last two centuries Caucasians have enjoyed a privileged position at the top of the global racial hierarchy. During the period of European colonial empires their pre-eminent position was frequently explained in terms of racial theories designed to show the inherent superiority of the white race. Since the mid twentieth century, with the defeat of Nazism followed by colonial liberation, such explicitly racial theories have been in retreat in most regions of the world and now enjoy only minority appeal in the West. Nonetheless, if such racial theories are no longer regarded for the most part as acceptable, there remains an implicit and omnipresent global racial pecking order, with whites invariably at the top.

Notwithstanding these difficulties, the table below gives a rough idea of the total size of the Chinese diaspora and the main countries where it resides. Chinese migration has a long history, dating back to the Ming dynasty in the case of South-East Asia. The global Chinese diaspora began in the nineteenth century, when there was a surplus of labour in the southern coastal provinces of China and Chinese workers were recruited for the European colonies, often as indentured labour. The biggest migratory movements were to South-East Asia, but the Chinese also went in large numbers during the second half of the nineteenth century to the United States, notably in search of gold and to build the railroads, and also to Australia and many other parts of the world including Europe and South Africa. Over the period 1844-88 alone over 2 million Chinese found their way to such diverse locations as the Malay Peninsula, Indochina, Sumatra, Java, the Philippines, Hawaii, the Caribbean, Mexico, Peru, California and Australia.


pages: 790 words: 150,875

Civilization: The West and the Rest by Niall Ferguson

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Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, Atahualpa, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, BRICs, British Empire, clean water, collective bargaining, colonial rule, conceptual framework, Copley Medal, corporate governance, credit crunch, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Dean Kamen, delayed gratification, Deng Xiaoping, discovery of the americas, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, Hans Lippershey, haute couture, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, invention of movable type, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, land reform, land tenure, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, market bubble, Martin Wolf, means of production, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, new economy, probability theory / Blaise Pascal / Pierre de Fermat, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, rent-seeking, reserve currency, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, special economic zone, spice trade, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, The Great Moderation, the market place, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, trade route, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, upwardly mobile, uranium enrichment, wage slave, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, World Values Survey

By the eve of the First World War typhoid and cholera had effectively been eliminated in Europe as a result of improvements in public health and sanitation, while diphtheria and tetanus were controlled by vaccine. In the twenty-three modern Asian countries for which data are available, with one exception, the health transition came between the 1890s and the 1950s. In Africa it came between the 1920s and the 1950s, with just two exceptions out of forty-three countries. In nearly all Asian and African countries, then, life expectancy began to improve before the end of European colonial rule. Indeed, the rate of improvement in Africa has declined since independence, especially but not exclusively because of the HIV-AIDS epidemic. It is also noteworthy that Latin American countries did not fare any better, despite enjoying political independence from the early 1800s.8 The timing of the improvement in life expectancy is especially striking as much of it predated the introduction of antibiotics (not least streptomycin as a cure for tuberculosis), the insecticide DDT and vaccines other than the simple ones for smallpox and yellow fever invented in the imperial era (see below).

But in Africa the rates of infant mortality and premature death were appallingly high. Life expectancy in mid-nineteenth-century Senegal was probably in the low to mid-twenties.51 So Africa was to be the ultimate testing ground for the fourth killer application of Western civilization: the power of modern medicine to prolong human life. MÉDECINS SANS FRONTIÈRES Not for nothing was West Africa known as the white man’s graveyard: all over Africa the European colonial project ran the risk of being snuffed out in its infancy. A good illustration of the risks Europeans ran in Africa is the monument on Gorée Island to the twenty-one French doctors who perished in a yellow-fever outbreak in 1878. Tropical diseases took a heavy toll on the French colonial civil service; between 1887 and 1912, a total of 135 out of 984 appointees (16 per cent) died in the colonies.


pages: 436 words: 140,256

The Rise and Fall of the Third Chimpanzee by Jared Diamond

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agricultural Revolution, Atahualpa, Columbian Exchange, correlation coefficient, double helix, Drosophila, European colonialism, invention of gunpowder, invention of the wheel, invention of writing, out of africa, phenotype, Scientific racism, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, the scientific method, trade route, V2 rocket

Ironically, though, our cultural diversity has plunged even as our numbers have soared. To anyone who has not been to New Guinea, the long concealment of 50,000 people there seems incomprehensible. After all, the Grand Valley lies only 115 miles from both New Guinea's north coast and its south coast. Europeans discovered New Guinea in 1526, Dutch missionaries took up residence in 1852, and European colonial governments were established in 1884. Why did it take another fifty-four years to find the Grand Valley? The answers—terrain, food, and porters—become obvious as soon as one sets foot in New Guinea and tries to walk away from an established trail. Swamps in the lowlands, endless series of knife-edge ridges in the mountains, and jungle that covers everything reduce one's progress to a few miles per day under the best conditions.

Geography's role in determining our modern political history is even more obvious than the role I have discussed in determining the rate at which we domesticate plants and animals. From this perspective, it is almost funny to read that half of all American schoolchildren do not know where Panama is, but not at all funny when politicians display comparable ignorance. Among the many notorious examples of disasters brought on by politicians ignorant of geography, two must suffice: the unnatural boundaries drawn on the map of Africa by nineteenth-century European colonial powers, thereby undermining the stability of some modern African states that inherited those borders; and the borders of Eastern Europe drawn at the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 by politicians who knew little of that region, thereby helping to fuel the Second World War. Geography used to be a required subject in US schools and colleges until a few decades ago, when it began to be dropped from many curricula.


pages: 390 words: 119,527

Armed Humanitarians by Nathan Hodge

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Andrei Shleifer, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, British Empire, clean water, colonial rule, European colonialism, failed state, friendly fire, IFF: identification friend or foe, Khyber Pass, kremlinology, land reform, Mikhail Gorbachev, Potemkin village, private military company, profit motive, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, walking around money

The command became a fully activated unitary command one year later, on October 1, 2008. In some respects AFRICOM represented a simple streamlining and reorganization of U.S. military activity in Africa. Before AFRICOM, three different commands divided responsibility for watching Africa. U.S. European Command oversaw most of sub-Saharan Africa; it tended to view Africa as an extension of former European colonial territories. U.S. Central Command, focused primarily on the Middle East, was responsible for the countries bordering on the Red Sea. The island of Madagascar was under U.S. Pacific Command, a seeming afterthought. The creation of the new command signaled a major foreign policy shift. Instead of dealing with Africa through dozens of embassies, the U.S. government could approach the continent through a powerful, unified military command.

A deadly July 2010 traffic incident involving State Department contractors led to violent street protests not far from the U.S. embassy in Kabul; every accidental shooting at a checkpoint or misdirected air strike further inflames the population and gives insurgents more fodder for propaganda. Supersizing our commitment only serves to undermine the mission in the long run. And there’s the question about whether we really even understand the long-term mission. A rich literature exists about the European colonial experience, but Americans seem to lack the same gift for self-scrutiny. In his 1936 autobiographical short story, “Shooting an Elephant,” George Orwell described his moment of awakening when he was serving as an imperial policeman in Burma. Standing in front of the elephant, rifle in hand, he realized the hollowness and futility of the European presence and of his role as an enforcer of colonial law.


pages: 516 words: 159,734

War Without Mercy: PACIFIC WAR by John Dower

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anti-communist, Bartolomé de las Casas, British Empire, colonial rule, European colonialism, ghettoisation, labour mobility, land reform, Monroe Doctrine, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Scientific racism, South China Sea, Torches of Freedom, transcontinental railway

As one of the major Japanese newspapers put it after the battle of Iwo Jima, “Enemy plans to wipe Japan and the Japanese people off the face of the earth are no propaganda manifestations.”70 One of the more provocative diversions in doing military history involves imagining things that did not happen, and there are several such hypothetical possibilities that attract students of the war in Asia. What if the Japanese had attacked only the British and European colonies in Southeast Asia, for example, or had been detected en route to Pearl Harbor? What if the U.S. aircraft carriers had been at the Hawaii anchorage as expected, or the Japanese had followed up with a further wave of attacks that included targets such as the fuel storage tanks? Suppose Hitler had not declared war against the United States following Japan’s attack (it is still not clear why he did), or the Japanese had changed their naval codes and plugged their disastrous intelligence leaks before Midway, or the Japanese naval command at Leyte had been bolder and more imaginative–how would such developments have affected the course of the war?

After they had been defeated, Roosevelt once privately suggested, they should be encouraged by every means possible to intermarry with other races.20 It is in the milieu of such assumptions that the initial multipronged Japanese attack on Hawaii and Southeast Asia seemed so incredible in every sense of the word: for beyond the sheer audacity of the assault, few Westerners credited the Japanese with the mental or physical ability to formulate such complex military plans or carry them out so brilliantly. However optimistic Anglo-American leaders may have been in the summer and early autumn of 1941 concerning the possibility of forcing the Japanese to abandon their ambitions in Asia, by late November it had become clear to the top leadership that an attack was imminent. It was still assumed, however, that such an attack would be directed against the European colonies in Asia rather than the U.S. forces in Hawaii or the Philippines; and, in any case, like their British counterparts, few Americans at the command or popular level believed the Japanese would prove to be a formidable foe. Top-level U.S. military planners were by no means unaware of their relative weaknesses vis-à-vis the Japanese in 1941. On the contrary, one of the major arguments against taking a hard line on Japanese expansion in Asia at that time was that the United States was not yet adequately prepared for war.


pages: 469 words: 146,487

Empire: How Britain Made the Modern World by Niall Ferguson

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British Empire, Cape to Cairo, colonial rule, Corn Laws, European colonialism, imperial preference, income per capita, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, Khartoum Gordon, Khyber Pass, land reform, land tenure, Livingstone, I presume, Mahatma Gandhi, night-watchman state, profit motive, Scramble for Africa, spice trade, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, union organizing

Even more extensive and no less profitable was Portugal’s empire, which spread outwards from the Atlantic islands of Madeira and São Tomé to include the vast territory of Brazil and numerous trading outposts in West Africa, Indonesia, India and even China. In 1493 the Pope had issued a bull allocating trade in the Americas to Spain and trade in Asia to Portugal. In this division of the world, the Portuguese had got the sugar, spices and slaves. But what the English envied most was what the Spanish discovered in America: gold and silver. European colonial empires c. 1750 Since the time of Henry VII, Englishmen had dreamt of finding an ‘El Dorado’ of their own, in the hope that England too could become rich on American metals. Time and again they had drawn a blank. The best they could ever manage was to exploit their skills as sailors to steal gold from Spanish ships and settlements. As early as March 1496, in a move clearly inspired by Columbus’s discovery of America on behalf of the Spanish crown three years before, Henry VII granted letters patent to the Venetian navigator John Cabot, giving him and his sons full and free authority, faculty and power to sail to all parts, regions and coasts of the eastern, western and northern sea [not the southern sea, to avoid conflict with Spanish discoveries], under our banners, flags and ensigns … to find discover and investigate whatsoever islands, countries, regions or provinces of heathens or infidels, in whatsoever part of the world placed, which before this time were unknown to all Christians … [and to] conquer, occupy and possess whatsoever such towns, castles, cities and islands by them thus discovered that they may be able to conquer, occupy and possess, as our vassals and governors lieutenants and deputies therein, acquiring for us the dominion, title and jurisdiction of the same towns, castles, cities, islands and mainlands so discovered … The English sense of empire envy only grew more acute after the Reformation, when proponents of war against Catholic Spain began to argue that England had a religious duty to build a Protestant empire to match the ‘Popish’ empires of the Spanish and Portuguese.

We should also remember the quality of Russian rule in Poland, the Ireland of Central Europe; and in the Caucasus, where it extended as far as Batum on the Black Sea and Astara on the Caspian Sea; in the Central Asian provinces of Turkestan and Turkmenia; and in the Far East, where the new Trans-Siberian Railway conveyed the Tsar’s writ all the way to Vladivostok and finally into Manchuria. To be sure, there were resemblances between Russian colonization of the steppe and the roughly contemporaneous colonization of the American prairies. But there were differences too. In their European colonies the Russians pursued aggressive policies of ‘russification’; coercion of the Poles was increasing at a time when the British were debating Home Rule for Ireland. In Central Asia, resistance to Russian colonization was dealt with uncompromisingly; a revolt by Muslims in Samarkand and Semirechie in 1916 was bloodily suppressed and the rebel death toll may have reached hundreds of thousands. Yet all this would pale into insignificance alongside the crimes of the Russian, Japanese, German and Italian empires in the 1930s and 1940s.

The White Man's Burden: Why the West's Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good by William Easterly

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airport security, anti-communist, Asian financial crisis, bank run, banking crisis, Bretton Woods, British Empire, call centre, clean water, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, Edward Glaeser, European colonialism, failed state, farmers can use mobile phones to check market prices, George Akerlof, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, income per capita, Indoor air pollution, invisible hand, Kenneth Rogoff, laissez-faire capitalism, land reform, land tenure, microcredit, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, purchasing power parity, randomized controlled trial, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, structural adjustment programs, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, War on Poverty, Xiaogang Anhui farmers

The figure below shows indeed that the minority European settlements were richer than the average of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States in 1820; the latter were democratic places with a large majority of the population European. However, these democratic countries dramatically outperformed the economies of oligarchy over the next two centuries. As Acemoglu predicted, oligarchy can perform well for a while, but tends to stagnate eventually. The Bolivian example given at the beginning of this chapter fits the pattern of oligarchy and stagnation. Fig. 14. Minority European Versus Mostly European Colonies Illiberal Democracy Fareed Zakaria, in his 2003 book, The Future of Freedom, has brought to wide attention the idea of “illiberal democracy.” Why do democracies sometimes produce awful government despite free elections? A big problem with democracy and development, particularly with uneducated voters, is that the politicians could appeal to voters’ gut instincts of hatred, fear, nationalism, or racism to win elections.

They are imperfect as a test of colonialism because these areas were not chosen randomly—they wound up that way because of factors that influenced their social evolution. There was also some degree of European control in some of these territories, like the infamous European enclaves in China. Korea and Taiwan did spend some part of the twentieth century as colonies of Japan. I compare the non-colonies to European colonies that were not settled by Europeans. The colonies settled by Europeans are a special case, discussed in an earlier chapter. The non-settlement colonies are a more natural experiment of European intervention from afar. The non-colonies had more rapid increases in secondary education from 1960 to 2001. Growth per capita from 1950 to 2001 was 1.7 percentage points higher in the non-colonies than the non-settlement colonies, a huge difference for a fifty-one-year period.


pages: 537 words: 158,544

Second World: Empires and Influence in the New Global Order by Parag Khanna

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Admiral Zheng, affirmative action, anti-communist, Asian financial crisis, Bartolomé de las Casas, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, call centre, capital controls, central bank independence, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, complexity theory, crony capitalism, Deng Xiaoping, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, energy security, European colonialism, facts on the ground, failed state, flex fuel, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, friendly fire, Gini coefficient, global reserve currency, global supply chain, haute couture, Hernando de Soto, illegal immigration, income inequality, informal economy, invisible hand, Islamic Golden Age, Khyber Pass, knowledge economy, land reform, low skilled workers, means of production, megacity, Monroe Doctrine, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, open borders, open economy, Pax Mongolica, pirate software, Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances, Potemkin village, price stability, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, reserve currency, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, South China Sea, special economic zone, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Thomas L Friedman, trade route, trickle-down economics, uranium enrichment, urban renewal, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce

The quality of public schools has fallen all over the Arab region, while Islamic social networks provide food, shelter, and spiritual fulfillment to restless youth seeking a sense of belonging and importance—but similarly neglect to teach marketable skills. Idle hands do the devil’s work, and the social tinderbox created by undereducation and unemployment can be mobilized either to build a modern society or to destroy it. As the epic film The Battle of Algiers demonstrates, even 150 years of European colonialism failed to transform Arab society. What else can be done? For years Tunisians, Lebanese, Egyptians, and other Arabs have wandered in search of work in the oil industries of Libya, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia, and cross-border supply chains are finally emerging that can take advantage of this fluidity of Arab labor.11 Europe has invested in special investment and export havens—a status the freewheeling port of Tangier has always enjoyed—which are emerging along the Mediterranean to create jobs, ease exports, and increase profits.

Fifteen years later, Prime Minister Rafiq al-Hariri and a dozen of his aides where blown into the sky in downtown Beirut, setting in motion the March 14 movement to demand removal of Syria’s military occupation. Because Lebanon has no stability, it has freedom and democracy by default. Syria, by contrast, is stabilized by leaders who allow neither freedom nor democracy. Both are linked by three major forces: the legacy of Phoenicians and Greek rule over the Levant (Tyre, Byblos, and Sidon were wealthy trade centers), European colonialism, and now a cross-border fraternal rivalry in which frequent assassinations are fair game and the sons of the now-deceased leaders Rafiq Hariri and Hafez Assad—Saad Hariri and Bashar Assad—struggle to defend their fathers’ honor. No one actually controls Lebanon, least of all the Lebanese. Lebanon’s politics are reminiscent of its archaeology in two ways: It is multilayered after millennia of being conquered while demonstrating an ability to rebuild time and again.


pages: 214 words: 57,614

America at the Crossroads: Democracy, Power, and the Neoconservative Legacy by Francis Fukuyama

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affirmative action, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, cuban missile crisis, David Brooks, European colonialism, failed state, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Internet Archive, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, mutually assured destruction, New Journalism, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, transaction costs, uranium enrichment, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus

It is useful at the outset to separate economic and political development, since the intellectual histories of these two complementary aspects of modernization have taken somewhat different paths, though the two strands had converged somewhat by the 1990s, with interesting implications for future policy. Economic Development Thinking on economic development has gone through a series of distinct stages since the dissolution of European colonial empires that began in the late 1940s. Under the early influence of the Harrod-Domar growth model, there was a widespread belief among economists that the chief obstacle to growth in newly independent countries was the so-called investment gap. 5 They tacitly assumed that underdeveloped countries were like developed countries, only lacking in capital. The development strategies promoted by the United States or multilateral agencies like the World Bank consequently focused on large infrastructure projects like dams, roads, and electricity, funneled through exist- Social Engineering and Development lg governments.


pages: 221 words: 55,901

The Globalization of Inequality by François Bourguignon

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Berlin Wall, Branko Milanovic, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, collective bargaining, Credit Default Swap, deglobalization, deindustrialization, Doha Development Round, Edward Glaeser, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, financial intermediation, gender pay gap, Gini coefficient, income inequality, income per capita, labor-force participation, minimum wage unemployment, offshore financial centre, open economy, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, Robert Gordon, Simon Kuznets, structural adjustment programs, The Spirit Level, too big to fail, very high income, Washington Consensus

This gap in growth tends to shrink after World War II and the rise in inter-­country inequality slows, then stops. While Japan first saw significant growth during the interwar period, the Asian “dragons” (South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan) began to experience strong growth after the war, and the Latin American countries saw accelerated growth during the Second World War as a result of strong policies of import substitution. Growth also accelerated in the European colonies that achieved independence. Finally, the gap between rates of growth in developed countries and developing countries would reverse slightly before the turn of the twenty-­first century. For more than two decades now, developing countries have been catching up. This began in Asian countries, notably the Indian and Chinese giants, marching in the steps of the Asian dragons, and since then has spread progressively to a large portion of the developing world, including the African continent in the 2000s.

What Went Wrong? Western Impact and Middle Eastern Response by Bernard Lewis

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Ayatollah Khomeini, British Empire, colonial rule, European colonialism, lone genius, spice trade, women in the workforce

At first the sultan, undeterred by the changes in France, turned to Paris for help; the Committee of Public Safety and later the Directoire responded. French-Ottoman cooperation was briefly interrupted by the Franco-Ottoman War of 1798 to 1802, but was later resumed, only to be interrupted again when Napoleon made peace with the czar at Turkish expense. The Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, involving the whole of Europe, extended to Africa and more especially to Asia through the encounters there between the European colonial powers. The relative weakness of the major Islamic powers had already in a sense been revealed by the first European expansion in Asia, when even small countries like Portugal and the Netherlands were able to establish themselves on the seas and on the coasts in defiance of the Muslim powers. The impotence of the Islamic world confronted with Europe was brought home in dramatic form in 1798, when a French expeditionary force commanded by a young general called Napoleon Bonaparte invaded, occupied, and governed Egypt.


pages: 225 words: 189

The Coming Anarchy: Shattering the Dreams of the Post Cold War by Robert D. Kaplan

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Berlin Wall, clean water, Deng Xiaoping, edge city, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global village, Honoré de Balzac, Peace of Westphalia, Ronald Reagan, Thomas Malthus, trade route, unemployed young men, Yom Kippur War

Traveling with Eritrean guerrillas in what, according to the map, was northern Ethi­ opia, traveling in "northern Iraq" with Kurdish guerrillas, and staying in a hotel in the Caucasus controlled by a local mafia— to say nothing of my experiences in West Africa—led me to de­ velop a healthy skepticism toward maps, which, I began to realize, create a conceptual barrier that prevents us from com­ prehending the political crack-up just beginning to occur worldwide. Consider the map of the world, with its 190 or so countries, each signified by a bold and uniform color: this map, with which all of us have grown up, is generally an invention of modernism, specifically of European colonialism. Modernism, in the sense of which I speak, began with the rise of nationstates in Europe and was confirmed by the death of feudalism at the end of the Thirty Years' War—an event that was inter­ posed between the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, which together gave birth to modern science. People were suddenly flush with an enthusiasm to categorize, to define. The map, THE COMING ANARCHY / 39 based on scientific techniques of measurement, offered a way to classify new national organisms, making a jigsaw puzzle of neat pieces without transition zones between them.


pages: 225 words: 61,388

Dead Aid: Why Aid Is Not Working and How There Is a Better Way for Africa by Dambisa Moyo

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affirmative action, Asian financial crisis, Bretton Woods, colonial rule, correlation does not imply causation, credit crunch, diversification, diversified portfolio, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, failed state, financial innovation, financial intermediation, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, invisible hand, M-Pesa, market fundamentalism, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, microcredit, moral hazard, Ponzi scheme, rent-seeking, Ronald Reagan, sovereign wealth fund, The Chicago School, trade liberalization, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, Washington Consensus, Yom Kippur War

Average growth rate in the past twenty years was 1 per cent and 5 per cent in the last five years: has benefited from a recent copper price surge. Chief exports: copper, gold, cotton and sugar. Political system: adopted a nominal democracy ten years ago, having spent twenty years as a one-party state led by the same political party, and the same president. This is the Republic of Dongo. While fictitious, the Republic of Dongo is not far off the reality of many African countries. Freed from European colonial rule in the 1960s, the country’s background and evolution are pretty characteristic of the average African country. A socialist economy in the 1970s, it underwent privatization in the mid-1980s, moved to a democratic regime after Glasnost and Perestroika,1 and is ranked 3 out of a possible 10 on the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (where 0 is the least transparent).


pages: 1,773 words: 486,685

Global Crisis: War, Climate Change and Catastrophe in the Seventeenth Century by Geoffrey Parker

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agricultural Revolution, British Empire, Climatic Research Unit, colonial rule, currency manipulation / currency intervention, Defenestration of Prague, Edmond Halley, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, failed state, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial independence, friendly fire, Google Earth, Isaac Newton, Joseph Schumpeter, Khyber Pass, Mercator projection, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Thiel, Republic of Letters, South China Sea, the market place, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, unemployed young men, University of East Anglia, World Values Survey

Thousands of Chinese families, too, elected to escape adversity by migrating overseas. Many, especially from the mountainous southeastern provinces, left for the Philippines and Southeast Asia, either as settlers or to ‘service’ the European colonies there. By 1700 some 20,000 Chinese lived in a special suburb of Manila known as the Parián (and its population would have been much larger but for the periodic massacres carried out by the Spaniards and their Filipino allies); and several thousand more lived in Batavia (now Jakarta), which became a ‘Chinese colonial town under Dutch protection’.67 The establishment of European colonies on Taiwan after 1624 created another opportunity for Chinese ‘co-colonization’. Almost immediately, the governor of Fujian province allowed ‘several tens of thousands’ of those destitute through famine to migrate to the lands around the main Dutch settlement, providing each person with three taels of silver and every family with a cow.

The summer of 1642 was the 28th coldest, and that of 1643 the 10th coldest, recorded in the northern hemisphere over the past six centuries; while the winter of 1649–50 seems to have been the coldest on record in both northern and eastern China. Abnormal climatic conditions lasted from the 1640s until the 1690s – the longest as well as the most severe episode of global cooling recorded in the entire Holocene Era – leading climatologists to dub this period ‘The Little Ice Age’.15 1. The Global Crisis. Although Europe and East Asia formed the heartland of the ‘General Crisis’, the Mughal and Ottoman empires, like the European colonies in America, also experienced episodes of severe political disruption in the mid-seventeenth century. This volume seeks to link the climatologists’ Little Ice Age with the historians’ General Crisis – and to do so without ‘painting bull's eyes around bullet holes’: without arguing that global cooling ‘must’ have somehow caused recession and revolution around the world simply because climate change is the only plausible common denominator.

Chapter 12 examines the consequences of the prolonged wars and multiple regime changes in the three kingdoms between 1642 and 1660, including the first formulation of democratic principles now regarded as central to Western society; the attempts by the central government to overthrow them between 1660 and 1688; and their limited resurrection after the ‘Glorious Revolution’ of 1688–9. Part III considers two categories of ‘exception’ to this pattern: those areas where at least part of the population apparently emerged from the seventeenth-century trauma relatively unscathed (some European colonies in America; South and Southeast Asia; Japan); and those regions where the impact of the Little Ice Age remains ambiguous (the Great Plains of North America; Sub-Saharan Africa; Australia). Within the first category, in Mughal India and some of its neighbours, abundant resources enabled the state to ride out the crisis (chapter 13); while in Spanish Italy, the government managed to overcome major rebellions by making major concessions (chapter 14).


pages: 228 words: 69,642

Among the Islands by Tim Flannery

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British Empire, colonial rule, David Attenborough, European colonialism, Kula ring

Cook encountered New Caledonia in 1774, during his second voyage, naming it New Caledonia (Caledonia being the name the Romans gave to northern Scotland) because the sparse vegetation of the island’s nickel-rich mountains reminded him of heather-clad peaks. French missionaries began arriving in the 1840s, and in 1853 the French government formally annexed it. Like Australia, New Caledonia served as a penal colony. Today, New Caledonia remains one of the world’s last European colonies. Technically, it is known as a ‘special collectivity’ of France; only in July 2010 was it decided that the Kanak flag (the flag of the indigenous people) should fly beside the tricoleur as an official flag of the territory. At the time we conducted our surveys the political environment of both Fiji and New Caledonia was changing quickly. Heading up the Fijian survey was Dr Sandra (Sandy) Ingleby, now collection manager in mammals at the Australian Museum, while I led the New Caledonian survey.


pages: 234 words: 63,149

Every Nation for Itself: Winners and Losers in a G-Zero World by Ian Bremmer

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airport security, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, blood diamonds, Bretton Woods, BRICs, capital controls, clean water, Deng Xiaoping, Doha Development Round, energy security, European colonialism, failed state, global rebalancing, global supply chain, income inequality, informal economy, Julian Assange, labour mobility, Martin Wolf, Mikhail Gorbachev, mutually assured destruction, Nixon shock, nuclear winter, purchasing power parity, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, smart grid, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, special economic zone, Stuxnet, trade route, uranium enrichment, Washington Consensus, WikiLeaks, Yom Kippur War

That breakdown is then exacerbated by the reemergence of separatist movements in Britain, Belgium, and Spain. This phenomenon then spreads to regions where borders have historically been drawn by outsiders. Local governments in the Caucasus region and Central Asia point to international recognition of independence for Kosovo as a precedent for small ethnically based states to declare independence. Former European colonies in Africa, including large resource-rich states like Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo, face greater internal stresses as local governments insist on greater control over natural wealth drawn from within “their” territories. This is the relatively benign version of the wild-card scenario. What about states that depend for their stability on the revenue generated by the export of crude oil?


pages: 231 words: 72,656

A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage

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Berlin Wall, British Empire, Colonization of Mars, Copley Medal, Edmond Halley, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Eratosthenes, European colonialism, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, Isaac Newton, joint-stock company, laissez-faire capitalism, Lao Tzu, multiplanetary species, out of africa, South Sea Bubble, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transatlantic slave trade

For the Arab origins of coffee and coffeehouse culture and the debate over coffee's effects, see Hattox, Coffee and Coffeehouses; Schapira, Schapira, and Schapira, The Book of Coffee and Tea; and Weinberg and Bealer, The World of Caffeine. The account of coffee's spread into Europe and the rise of London's coffeehouses follows Ellis, The Penny Universities, and Jacob, Coffee. For the cultivation of coffee in European colonies, see Ukers, All About Coffee, and Weinberg and Bealer, The World of Caffeine. 8. The Coffeehouse Internet For the Internet-like role of coffeehouses, see Sommerville, "Surfing the Coffeehouse," and Darnton, "An Early Information Society." For the use of coffeehouses by scientists and financiers, see Stewart, "Other Centres of Calculation"; Stewart, The Rise of Public Science; Ellis, The Penny Universities; Inwood, The Man Who Knew Too Much; Jacob, Coffee; and Waller, 1700.


pages: 294 words: 82,438

Simple Rules: How to Thrive in a Complex World by Donald Sull, Kathleen M. Eisenhardt

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Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, asset allocation, Atul Gawande, barriers to entry, Basel III, Berlin Wall, carbon footprint, Checklist Manifesto, complexity theory, Craig Reynolds: boids flock, Credit Default Swap, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, diversification, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, Exxon Valdez, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, haute cuisine, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, Kickstarter, late fees, Lean Startup, Louis Pasteur, Lyft, Moneyball by Michael Lewis explains big data, Nate Silver, Network effects, obamacare, Paul Graham, performance metric, price anchoring, RAND corporation, risk/return, Saturday Night Live, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Startup school, statistical model, Steve Jobs, TaskRabbit, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, transportation-network company, two-sided market, Wall-E, web application, Y Combinator, Zipcar

The expanding world of the sixteenth century created new possibilities to help souls, and the simple rules of the “Formula” provided the Jesuits with the flexibility to seize these opportunities, something incumbent religious orders lacked. As a religious startup with few rules, the Jesuits were well positioned to experiment with novel ministries. The first generation of Jesuits experimented widely: they converted natives in newly formed European colonies; negotiated peace between Catholic and Protestant rulers; freed debtors from prison; ministered to repentant prostitutes; preached on the streets; brought apostates back to Catholicism; cared for disabled soldiers; nursed lepers; and brokered truces among feuding Sicilian families. Even sympathetic commentators have characterized the Jesuits’ diverse ministries as a “grocery list” that “might be separated by only a hair’s breath, or less, from opportunism.”


pages: 239 words: 64,812

Geek Sublime: The Beauty of Code, the Code of Beauty by Vikram Chandra

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Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Apple II, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, British Empire, business process, conceptual framework, create, read, update, delete, crowdsourcing, East Village, European colonialism, finite state, Firefox, Flash crash, glass ceiling, Grace Hopper, haute couture, iterative process, Jaron Lanier, John von Neumann, land reform, London Whale, Paul Graham, pink-collar, revision control, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, theory of mind, Therac-25, Turing machine, wikimedia commons, women in the workforce

But it brings with it unique assets such as the direct verbal and thematic continuities that transcend local contexts and that, for that very reason, enable a powerful articulation of the regional in its true fullness … Interacting with these vernaculars, Sanskrit is itself continuously changing, stretching the boundaries of the sayable, thinking new thoughts, searching for ways to formulate this newness.2 So on the eve of colonialism in the early eighteenth century, there was still a thriving—if diminished—cosmopolis. Sheldon Pollock writes: The two centuries before European colonialism decisively established itself in the subcontinent around 1750 constitute one of the most innovative epochs of Sanskrit systematic thought (in language analysis, logic, hermeneutics, moral-legal philosophy, and the rest). Thinkers produced new formulations of old problems, in entirely new discursive idioms, in what were often new scholarly genres employing often a new historicist framework; some even called themselves (or, more often, their enemies) “the new” scholars (navya).3 This ancient, widespread transmission was finally fractured by the establishment of English as the language of colonial politics and commerce, and the institutionalization of new dispensations of morality, knowledge, and power.


pages: 270 words: 81,311

In the Devil's Garden: A Sinful History of Forbidden Food by Stewart Lee Allen

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anti-communist, British Empire, clean water, East Village, European colonialism, Filipino sailors, Golden Gate Park, haute cuisine, trade route

“The barbarous Indians which know no better are constrained to make a vertue of a necessitie, and think it a good food,” wrote the author of the influential Gerard’s Herbal of 1597, “whereas we may easily judge that it nourisheth but little and is of hard and evil digestion.” Others claimed “Indian wheat” caused scabs and burned the blood. When they grew bored with blaming those red-skinned barbarians for the stuff, Europeans renamed it “Turkish wheat” after their archenemies in Istanbul and many nineteenth-century Irish preferred starvation to eating “brimstone yellow” corn bread. European colonials in America were too reliant on corn to completely snub it, so they assigned it to the lower classes. “Gentlemen’s houses,” noted Robert Beverley in 1705, “usually had bread made of wheat,” while corn bread was “mostly reserved for the servants,” an observation borne out by the African-American adage, “we grow the wheat and they give us the corn.” It was so déclassé that no American cookbook bothered to print a single corn recipe until the eve of the nineteenth century.


pages: 306 words: 79,537

Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Explain Everything About the World by Tim Marshall

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9 dash line, Admiral Zheng, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, British Empire, California gold rush, colonial rule, cuban missile crisis, Deng Xiaoping, European colonialism, facts on the ground, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Hans Island, LNG terminal, market fragmentation, megacity, Mercator projection distort size, especially Greenland and Africa, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, oil shale / tar sands, Scramble for Africa, South China Sea, trade route, transcontinental railway, Transnistria, UNCLOS, UNCLOS

The Ismaili school disputes the lineage of the seventh imam, while the Zaidi school disputes that of the fifth imam. There are also several offshoots from mainstream Shia Islam, with the Alawites and Druze being considered so far away from traditional Islamic thought that many other Muslims, especially among the Sunni, do not even recognize them as being part of the religion. The legacy of European colonialism left the Arabs grouped into nation states and ruled by leaders who tended to favor whichever branch of Islam (and tribe) from which they themselves came. These dictators then used the machinery of state to ensure their writ ruled over the entire area within the artificial lines drawn by the Europeans, regardless of whether this was historically appropriate and fair to the different tribes and religions that had been thrown together.

Economic Gangsters: Corruption, Violence, and the Poverty of Nations by Raymond Fisman, Edward Miguel

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accounting loophole / creative accounting, Andrei Shleifer, Asian financial crisis, barriers to entry, blood diamonds, clean water, colonial rule, congestion charging, European colonialism, failed state, feminist movement, George Akerlof, income inequality, income per capita, invisible hand, megacity, oil rush, prediction markets, random walk, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, unemployed young men

He flew to Nairobi to launch his new novel, Wizard of the Crow, his first in over a decade. Ngugi’s earlier works—a dozen or so novels and collections of stories, which he began publishing just after Kenyan independence in 1963—had been wildly successful, not only in Kenya but throughout the world. Through his carefully wrought characters and achingly familiar plots of loss and suffering, Ngugi captured the bewildering contradictions left behind in the wake of European colonialism. Ngugi had lived those contradictions and drew inspiration from his experiences, which were shared by so many of his fellow Kenyans. Ngugi had grown up during the 1950s, when Kenya had been rocked by the Mau Mau rebellion against its British colonizers. He had witnessed the murder CH A PTER O N E of his brother, who had died along with thousands of other Kenyans in opposing the British.


pages: 740 words: 217,139

The Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution by Francis Fukuyama

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Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Andrei Shleifer, Asian financial crisis, Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, blood diamonds, California gold rush, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, conceptual framework, correlation does not imply causation, currency manipulation / currency intervention, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, double entry bookkeeping, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Francisco Pizarro, Hernando de Soto, hiring and firing, invention of agriculture, invention of the printing press, Khyber Pass, labour market flexibility, land reform, land tenure, means of production, offshore financial centre, out of africa, Peace of Westphalia, principal–agent problem, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Scramble for Africa, spice trade, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transaction costs, Washington Consensus

Their rights to a particular piece of land are not exclusive, as in the case of land for Greek and Roman families, but rather ones of access.19 The fact that rights were not fully private did not, as in other customary arrangements, mean that pasture lands were inevitably overexploited. The Turkana and Masai of Kenya, and the Fulani pastoralists of West Africa, all developed systems whereby segments shared pasturage with each other while excluding outsiders.20 The failure of Westerners to understand the nature of customary property rights and their embeddedness in kinship groups lies in some measure at the root of many of Africa’s current dysfunctions. European colonial officials were convinced that economic development could not occur in the absence of modern property rights, that is, rights that were individual, alienable, and formally specified through the legal system. Many were convinced that Africans, left to their own devices, did not know how to manage land efficiently or sustainably.21 They were also motivated by self-interest, either for the sake of natural resources, commercial agricultural interests, or on behalf of European settlers.

Once states come into being, kinship becomes an obstacle to political development, since it threatens to return political relationships to the small-scale, personal ties of tribal societies. It is therefore not enough merely to develop a state; the state must avoid retribalization or what I label repatrimonialization. Not all societies around the world made this transition to statehood on their own. Most of Melanesia consisted of acephalous tribal societies (that is, lacking centralized authority) prior to the arrival of European colonial powers in the nineteenth century, as did roughly half of sub-Saharan Africa, and parts of South and Southeast Asia.2 The fact that these regions had no long history of statehood very much affected their development prospects after they achieved independence in the second half of the twentieth century, especially when compared to colonized parts of East Asia where state traditions were deeply embedded.

The Chomsky Reader by Noam Chomsky

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anti-communist, Bolshevik threat, British Empire, business climate, cognitive dissonance, conceptual framework, cuban missile crisis, Deng Xiaoping, European colonialism, feminist movement, Howard Zinn, interchangeable parts, land reform, land tenure, means of production, Monroe Doctrine, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, strikebreaker, theory of mind, Thomas L Friedman, union organizing, War on Poverty, éminence grise

And fascist Greece is quite all right today; it plays its NATO role, provides bases for American naval forces, and as an added attraction there is—as Secretary of Commerce Maurice Stans put it so lyrically not long ago—“the welcome that is given here to American companies and the sense of security the Government of Greece is imparting to them.” Friends and enemies can be identified, to a rather good first approximation, in terms of their role in maintaining an integrated global economy in which American capital can operate with relative freedom. The so-called “Communist” powers are particularly evil because their “do-it-yourself” model of development tends to extricate them from this system. For this reason, even European colonialism, which was bad enough, is preferable to indigenous communism. For the same reason, Washington will prefer a Trujillo to a Castro. The study group of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation and the National Planning Association was perceptive, and more honest than many contemporary ideologists, when it described the primary threat of communism as the economic transformation of the Communist powers “in ways which reduce their willingness and ability to complement the industrial economies of the West,” their refusal to play the game of comparative advantage and to rely primarily on foreign investment for development.

State Department recognized, explicitly, that Ho Chi Minh was the sole significant leader of Vietnamese nationalism, but that if Vietnamese nationalism was successful, it could be a threat to the Grand Area, and therefore something had to be done about it. The threat was not so much in Vietnam itself, which is not terribly important for American purposes (the freedom to rob in Vietnam is not all that significant); the fear was that the “rot would spread,” namely, the rot of successful social and economic development. In a very poor country which had suffered enormously under European colonialism, successful social and economic development could have a demonstration effect. Such development could be a model for people elsewhere and could lead them to try to duplicate it, and gradually the Grand Area would unravel. This, incidentally, is the rational version of the domino theory. There’s another version which is used to terrify the population. You know, Ho Chi Minh will get into a canoe and land in Boston and rape your sister and that sort of thing.


pages: 708 words: 176,708

The WikiLeaks Files: The World According to US Empire by Wikileaks

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affirmative action, anti-communist, banking crisis, battle of ideas, Boycotts of Israel, Bretton Woods, British Empire, capital controls, central bank independence, Chelsea Manning, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, corporate social responsibility, credit crunch, cuban missile crisis, Deng Xiaoping, Edward Snowden, energy security, energy transition, European colonialism, eurozone crisis, experimental subject, F. W. de Klerk, facts on the ground, failed state, financial innovation, Food sovereignty, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, future of journalism, high net worth, invisible hand, Julian Assange, Mikhail Gorbachev, millennium bug, Mohammed Bouazizi, Monroe Doctrine, Naomi Klein, Northern Rock, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, statistical model, structural adjustment programs, too big to fail, trade liberalization, trade route, UNCLOS, UNCLOS, uranium enrichment, Washington Consensus, WikiLeaks, éminence grise

Phase I: The “Monroe Doctrine” The Latin American continent and the Caribbean islands had long been regarded as America’s “backyard”—a colloquial expression of the doctrine outlined by US president James Monroe in 1823, which stated that any European intervention in these territories would be regarded by the US as an “unfriendly act.” This was arguably hubristic, given that the United States lacked the naval capacity to enforce the doctrine at this point. But it expressed the proprietorial attitude to South America that would define US policy. Just as the United States was expanding westward, it hoped to expand to its south—and to do so, it would have to break the grip of the European colonial empires. In the meantime, American capital penetrated markets in Cuba, Brazil, Nicaragua, and beyond. And by 1890, with westward overland expansion almost completed, it began to construct a much larger navy for overseas gains. A victorious war with the Spanish Empire in 1898 won it control of Cuba and inaugurated a period of frantic military activism, saber-rattling, invasions, and occupations in Honduras, Cuba, and Nicaragua.

Domestic opposition to foreign interventions, amid a climate of quasi-isolationism, encouraged the US to intervene, in a calibrated and timely manner, only when, first, there was a clear and present danger of regional domination by revisionist states on the Eurasian landmass, and, second, its own interests (and territorial integrity) were directly threatened, as when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor.1 Historically, the US saw itself as an exceptional nation, founded upon principles of liberal democracy and opposed to archaic, oppressive forms of European colonialism. After all, the US itself emerged out of a protracted struggle for independence, culminating in the American Revolutionary War against the British monarchy (1775–83). But, as scholars such as John Mearsheimer note,2 hegemonic expansion was a recurring theme throughout America’s own uniquely successful state-building project: The United States is the only regional hegemon in modern history … the Founding Fathers and their successors consciously and deliberately sought to achieve hegemony in the Americas … To realize their so-called Manifest Destiny, they murdered large numbers of Native Americans and stole their land, bought Florida from Spain (1819) and what is now the center of the United States from France (1803).


pages: 710 words: 164,527

The Battle of Bretton Woods: John Maynard Keynes, Harry Dexter White, and the Making of a New World Order by Benn Steil

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Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, banks create money, Bretton Woods, British Empire, capital controls, currency manipulation / currency intervention, currency peg, deindustrialization, European colonialism, facts on the ground, fiat currency, financial independence, floating exchange rates, full employment, global reserve currency, imperial preference, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, margin call, means of production, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, Monroe Doctrine, New Journalism, open economy, Potemkin village, price mechanism, price stability, psychological pricing, reserve currency, road to serfdom, seigniorage, South China Sea, special drawing rights, The Great Moderation, the market place, trade liberalization, Works Progress Administration

To proceed as if it can be made in London and ‘put over’ in Washington, or as if British policy can in the main develop independently and be only ‘co-ordinated’ with America is merely to kick against the pricks.” But the Roosevelt administration would not wait for victory before pressing its world vision. While White was unveiling his economic blueprint, the president was laying out his political version, central to which was the dismantling of the European colonial empires. He infuriated his devoted pen pal the prime minister with an April 11 cable blasting “the unwillingness of the British Government to concede to the Indians the right of self-government.”10 Harry Hopkins is said to have described it as “wrathfully received.”11 Churchill saw it as hypocritical, meddlesome, and irresponsible, given the immediate importance to the Allied cause of a stable India.

Whom did we say we would see at four-fifteen?” “The Netherlands—the Czechoslovakians at four-thirty,” said his assistant and diarist, Mrs. Klotz. “The Chileans, I think, are next in line,” said Collado. “They are the ones who are giving us a little trouble.” “The Chileans at four-forty-five,” Morgenthau affirmed. The one area of intense political debate within the U.S. delegation was how to deal with the European colonial powers. Did they have a right to bigger quotas because of their large, far-flung colonies? Senator Wagner couldn’t abide it. “[A]t Tehran it was decided that these countries shall have their freedom if they want it.… Now, are we doing something in here to say to them, ‘We are holding you down?’” “I think the Queen of the Netherlands would be very disturbed if you did anything,” White suggested, in reference to the Dutch East Indies.


pages: 250 words: 88,762

The Logic of Life: The Rational Economics of an Irrational World by Tim Harford

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affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, colonial rule, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, endowment effect, European colonialism, experimental economics, experimental subject, George Akerlof, income per capita, invention of the telephone, Jane Jacobs, John von Neumann, law of one price, Martin Wolf, mutually assured destruction, New Economic Geography, new economy, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, women in the workforce

The Beauchamp Committee was established in 1785 to decide where to deport the convicts to instead; Gambia was a possibility and so was southwest Africa, but in the end the deadly local diseases were thought to pose an unacceptable risk, even to convicted criminals. (On a large expedition led by a Scottish explorer from Gambia to Niger just ten years later, every single European died.) Mortality rates in African colonies were typically 40 or 50 percent in the first year. As well as swaying the consciences of the penal authorities, all these facts were well known to potential migrants from the European colonial powers, who much preferred to settle in the safer climes of what would eventually become Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States. Instead of trying to send colonial settlers to areas with fearsome tropical diseases, Europeans instead made the even more brutal yet selfishly rational decision to establish the slave trade in such places and set up abusive economic systems designed to exploit the land and people or scrape up as much gold and ivory as possible in the shortest time.


pages: 311 words: 17,232

Living in a Material World: The Commodity Connection by Kevin Morrison

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barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, carbon footprint, clean water, commodity trading advisor, diversified portfolio, Doha Development Round, Elon Musk, energy security, European colonialism, flex fuel, food miles, Hernando de Soto, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, hydrogen economy, Long Term Capital Management, new economy, North Sea oil, oil rush, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, out of africa, peak oil, price mechanism, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade liberalization, transaction costs, uranium enrichment, young professional

The summit was held on the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the People’s Republic of China and African countries. This time the link was politically very different though – fifty years ago Mao’s China had forged relations with President Nassar of Egypt in what was seen to be an ‘anti-West’ alliance. China’s hunger for raw materials has put a new global power in Africa, which is still dealing with the legacy of European colonialism; nowhere more so than the Congo, which is once again the focus of international companies wanting to tap its riches. Doing the Congo Congo is unique in terms of colonialism. It became the private property of King Leopold II, constitutional monarch of Belgium, and the absolute ruler of the Congo during the 1880s, but there was no legal link between the two countries until 1908, when it was renamed the Belgian Congo (Wauters, 1930).


pages: 392 words: 104,760

Babel No More: The Search for the World's Most Extraordinary Language Learners by Michael Erard

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Asperger Syndrome, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, complexity theory, European colonialism, pattern recognition, Skype, Steven Pinker, theory of mind

Historical and economic forces also make up an important part of the story, not only by determining which languages one learns and what one does with them, but by calling forth and channeling the neurological traits that serve learning, speaking, and using a lot of languages. Such forces also shape who happens to have access to what opportunities for school, travel, and even literacy. Recall how European wars provided Mezzofanti with sick soldiers in polyglot hospitals, and how European colonialism gave young Cameroonian men the need to learn more languages. Clearly, the brain is an important part of the story, and hyperpolyglots seem to have unusual neurological origins. Maybe this looks like a nostalgic return to the era when people believed in elite brains, but it’s not. The new neuroscience is locating the neural signatures of high performance, figuring out how to manipulate the plasticity of specific brain systems, and trying to understand the genetic factors that impact cognitive abilities as well as disabilities.


pages: 342 words: 88,736

The Big Ratchet: How Humanity Thrives in the Face of Natural Crisis by Ruth Defries

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agricultural Revolution, Columbian Exchange, demographic transition, double helix, European colonialism, food miles, Francisco Pizarro, Haber-Bosch Process, Internet Archive, John Snow's cholera map, out of africa, planetary scale, premature optimization, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade

Land is a limited quantity, and the land that will grow wheat is absolutely dependent on difficult and capricious natural phenomena.” According to his calculations and extrapolations, land was too scarce to produce enough wheat to satisfy “the great Caucasian race,” which he claimed included “the peoples of Europe, United States, British America, the white inhabitants of South Africa, Australia, parts of South America, and the white population of the European colonies.” He estimated that the number of bread-eaters was increasing “more than 6,000,000 per annum, necessitating annual additions to the bread supply nearly one-half greater than sufficed twenty-five years ago.” “What are our prospects of obtaining this amount?” he asked. Crookes’s motives in posing the question were not all benign—one could say they were chauvinistic, if not bordering on racist: “We are born wheat eaters. . . .


pages: 369 words: 94,588

The Enigma of Capital: And the Crises of Capitalism by David Harvey

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accounting loophole / creative accounting, anti-communist, Asian financial crisis, bank run, banking crisis, Bernie Madoff, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business climate, call centre, capital controls, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, failed state, financial innovation, Frank Gehry, full employment, global reserve currency, Google Earth, Guggenheim Bilbao, illegal immigration, indoor plumbing, interest rate swap, invention of the steam engine, Jane Jacobs, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Just-in-time delivery, land reform, liquidity trap, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, means of production, megacity, microcredit, moral hazard, mortgage debt, new economy, New Urbanism, Northern Rock, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, place-making, Ponzi scheme, precariat, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, special drawing rights, special economic zone, statistical arbitrage, structural adjustment programs, the built environment, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, trickle-down economics, urban renewal, urban sprawl, white flight, women in the workforce

The uneven geographical development that results is as infinitely varied as it is volatile: a deindustrialised city in northern China; a shrinking city in what was once East Germany; the booming industrial cities in the Pearl River delta; an IT concentration in Bangalore; a Special Economic Zone in India where dispossessed peasants revolt; indigenous populations under pressure in Amazonia or New Guinea; the affluent neighbourhoods in Greenwich, Connecticut (until recently, at least, hedge fund capital of the world); the conflict-ridden oil fields in the Ogoni region of Nigeria; the autonomous zones carved out by a militant movement such as the Zapatistas in Chiapas, Mexico; the vast soy bean production zones in Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina; the rural regions of Darfur or the Congo where civil wars relentlessly rage; the staid middle-class suburbs of London, Los Angeles or Munich; the shanty towns of South Africa; the garment factories of Sri Lanka or the call centres of Barbados and Bangalore ‘manned’ entirely by women; the new megacities in the Gulf States with their star-architect-designed buildings – all of this (and of course much more) when taken together constitutes a world of geographical difference that has been made by human action. At first blush, this world would appear to be so geographically diverse as to escape principled understanding, let alone rationalised control. How on earth does it all relate? That there are intertwinings and inter-relationships is obvious. The civil wars in Africa, in many ways sad legacies of European colonial practices, reflect the long history of corporate and state-led struggles to control Africa’s valued resources, with China these days an increasingly important player. The factory in northern China or Ohio closes down in part because the factories in the Pearl River delta open up. The call centre in Barbados or Bangalore services customers in Ohio and London and the shirts or skirts worn in Paris have labels from Sri Lanka or Bangladesh, just as the shoes that were once made in Italy now come from Vietnam.


pages: 396 words: 107,814

Is That a Fish in Your Ear?: Translation and the Meaning of Everything by David Bellos

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Clapham omnibus, Claude Shannon: information theory, Douglas Hofstadter, Etonian, European colonialism, haute cuisine, invention of the telephone, invention of writing, natural language processing, Republic of Letters, speech recognition

They work into languages they have learned long after the critical age of language acquisition—they are what we termed L2 translators see here of this book. They therefore run the same kind of risk of creating unintentionally comical or offensive effects as do the creators of international signage in Croatian seaside hotels. Nida’s main concern was to try to ensure they did not. Bible translation into non-European languages, which began with European colonial expansion as early as the seventeenth century, was highly inventive from the start. Albert Cornelius Ruyl, a junior trader in the Dutch East India Company with unusual linguistic skills, first taught himself Malay—a regional contact language—when he began his service in Sumatra. He wrote a grammar, then translated the Gospel of Matthew from Dutch. Ruyl altered and adapted Malay as he went along, using words from Arabic, Portuguese, and Sanskrit when he knew no corresponding term in Malay.


pages: 319 words: 95,854

You Are What You Speak: Grammar Grouches, Language Laws, and the Politics of Identity by Robert Lane Greene

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anti-communist, British Empire, centre right, discovery of DNA, European colonialism, facts on the ground, haute couture, illegal immigration, Mahatma Gandhi, Mikhail Gorbachev, Ronald Reagan, Steven Pinker, Yogi Berra

They opposed South Africa’s entry into the Second World War, quietly supporting the Axis. But three years after the war’s end, in 1948, an assertive Afrikaner party, the National Party, won South Africa’s elections for the first time. With this victory began the period of legally enforced “apartness” or, in Afrikaans, apartheid. Before 1948, South Africa’s white rule was not unlike that in other European colonies in Africa, such as Algeria or Kenya. Apartheid, though, was a different beast: the most legally elaborate, and stiflingly oppressive, system of minority rule in the world. Blacks couldn’t move freely about the country, own land in the vast majority of it, work in skilled trades, join unions, have sex with or marry whites, or even, at apartheid’s peak, learn mathematics in school. What was the point, mused apartheid’s great architect, Hendrik Verwoerd, in teaching a subject they could never use?


pages: 323 words: 95,939

Present Shock: When Everything Happens Now by Douglas Rushkoff

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algorithmic trading, Andrew Keen, bank run, Benoit Mandelbrot, big-box store, Black Swan, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, cashless society, citizen journalism, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, disintermediation, Donald Trump, double helix, East Village, Elliott wave, European colonialism, Extropian, facts on the ground, Flash crash, game design, global supply chain, global village, Howard Rheingold, hypertext link, Inbox Zero, invention of agriculture, invention of hypertext, invisible hand, iterative process, John Nash: game theory, Kevin Kelly, laissez-faire capitalism, Law of Accelerating Returns, loss aversion, mandelbrot fractal, Marshall McLuhan, Merlin Mann, Milgram experiment, mutually assured destruction, Network effects, New Urbanism, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, Occupy movement, passive investing, pattern recognition, peak oil, price mechanism, prisoner's dilemma, Ralph Nelson Elliott, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Silicon Valley, Skype, social graph, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, the medium is the message, The Wisdom of Crowds, theory of mind, Turing test, upwardly mobile, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, Y2K

(Only France, with its limited navy, proved incapable of expanding in quite the same way, leading finance minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert to invent the concept of French luxury and achieve expansion through exports. “French fashions must be France’s answers to Spain’s gold mines in Peru,” he declared.)22 Once the overt conquests of nations and the subjugation of their people was no longer feasible, the West achieved the same thing through more virtual means. After World War II, the last of the European colonies—such as India and Palestine—were proving ungovernable. The creation of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund gave Western powers a new way to expand their economies without actually taking over countries. Instead, in the name of liberating these regions, they would lend large sums to so-called developing nations, at interest. In return for the privilege of going into debt, the borrowing nations would also be required to open themselves to unrestricted trade with lending nations’ corporations.


pages: 341 words: 111,525

Blood River: A Journey to Africa's Broken Heart by Tim Butcher

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airport security, blood diamonds, clean water, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, discovery of the americas, European colonialism, failed state, Livingstone, I presume, Scramble for Africa, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade

The greatest shame arising from Stanley's Congo journey was how it started this pattern of sovereignty-stripping, a process whereby the vast majority of Africans in the Congo and elsewhere have ended up not just without any say in the running of their country, but abused and exploited by their African leaders. While outsiders led by Stanley can be blamed for creating this situation, the people of Africa must share responsibility for showing themselves unable to change it. The Malaysian naval officer on my river boat was right to ask why former European colonies in Asia have been able to develop since independence, while those in Africa have regressed. The cruelty and greed of African dictators is mostly to blame, but it is also true that the peoples of Africa have not been capable of working together to rein in the excesses of dictators. People power in Africa has a wretched record. The challenge for the future must be to restore some sense of sovereignty and control to all in Africa, not just the elite.


pages: 364 words: 102,225

Instant City: Life and Death in Karachi by Steve Inskeep

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battle of ideas, British Empire, call centre, Edward Glaeser, European colonialism, illegal immigration, informal economy, Jane Jacobs, Khyber Pass, Kibera, knowledge economy, Mahatma Gandhi, McMansion, megacity, new economy, New Urbanism, urban planning, urban renewal

In recent decades, the most significant movements to cities have come in Africa and Asia. Karachi has been a destination for some of the most dramatic migrations of all. No one metropolis could capture the full variety of the world’s growing cities, but Karachi is representative in several ways. It’s on the Asian coastline, where massive urban growth is under way. Its modern foundations were laid during the age of European colonialism. Its great expansion coincided with the postwar collapse of empire, when industrialization attracted people to the city—as did the desperation of people seeking shelter from political or economic catastrophes. And it’s surprising to learn how often Karachi’s course has been influenced by trends, ideas, or investment from other cities. It’s a listening post where we can take in a global conversation.

Propaganda and the Public Mind by Noam Chomsky, David Barsamian

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Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, Bretton Woods, capital controls, deindustrialization, European colonialism, experimental subject, Howard Zinn, Hyman Minsky, interchangeable parts, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, Martin Wolf, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, structural adjustment programs, Thomas L Friedman, Tobin tax, Washington Consensus

To get back to your point, the more Europe is independent, the more weight it will be able to throw around on this issue. There are already indications of emerging trade wars with Europe, for example, over bananas. There’s a big conflict at the WTO right now between the European Union and the United States. Different corporations are involved. The E.U. has been giving preferences to former European colonies in the Caribbean. The U.S. wants in this case a “level playing field,” because the big producers, the really rich corporations, happen to be in U.S. hands. So they’d like to have a “level playing field,” which means crushing the Caribbean islands. You’ve said many times that you’re not Amnesty International. You can’t support every single issue. What are the factors that determine your involvement in a particular issue?

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

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British Empire, delayed gratification, European colonialism, neurotypical, urban sprawl, wage slave

Already they’re running up his arms, the black kind and the vicious little yellow kind. Surprising what a sharp sting they can give, especially the yellow ones. He rubs them away. “It is the strict adherence to daily routine that tends towards the maintenance of good morale and the preservation of sanity,” he says out loud. He has the feeling he’s quoting from a book, some obsolete, ponderous directive written in aid of European colonials running plantations of one kind or another. He can’t recall ever having read such a thing, but that means nothing. There are a lot of blank spaces in his stub of a brain, where memory used to be. Rubber plantations, coffee plantations, jute plantations. (What was jute?) They would have been told to wear solar topis, dress for dinner, refrain from raping the natives. It wouldn’t have said raping.

Fateful Triangle: The United States, Israel, and the Palestinians (Updated Edition) (South End Press Classics Series) by Noam Chomsky

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anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, colonial rule, David Brooks, European colonialism, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Monroe Doctrine, New Journalism, random walk, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, strikebreaker, the market place, Thomas L Friedman

The head of Israel’s Northern Command, General Avigdor Ben Gal, described the Arabs of Galilee (within Israel proper) as “a cancer in Israel’s body” an attitude echoed in references to the “underpopulated Galilee” (Irving Howe), meaning that the Galilee has too few Jews (but too many Arab citizens, Israel fears). Others fulminate over the Arab “crazed in the distinctive ways of his culture” and committed to “pointless” though “momentarily gratifying” acts of “bloodlust” (New Republic editor Martin Peretz) .23 These persistent attitudes, familiar throughout the history of European colonialism, help us understand what is happening today The Israeli editor Yigal Schwartz, on completing his tour as a reserve officer in the West Bank, described the prevailing attitude among the military Classics in Politics: The Fateful Triangle Noam Chomsky The Palestinian Uprising 806 as based on the assumption that they are dealing with “primitive people, Indians, whom it is our duty to educate and discipline,” teaching them that “they are children and we are parents who educate them,” with the rod if necessary.

Visiting Gaza shortly before the uprising, Prime Minister Shamir called city officials and notables to meet him, left them waiting outdoors before a locked door, and when they were finally allowed their say, abruptly informed them that Israel would never leave Gaza and departed; “humiliation from this source has a definite political significance,” Hareven adds, and did not pass unnoticed among people who have learned that “the Jews understand nothing but force.”38 These are the conditions of everyday life, more telling than the corpses and broken bones. The similarity to the deep South in its worst days is plain enough. The phenomenon is typical of European colonialism, for example George Washington, who referred to the “merciless Indian savages” of the Declaration of Independence as “beasts of prey, tho’ they differ in shape,” who must be treated accordingly39 Today, extraordinary comments pass virtually unnoticed. I will mention only one example, because of its relevance to the elite media here as well. While I was in Israel, Times correspondent Thomas Friedman had lengthy interviews in the Hebrew press in connection with his Pulitzer Prize award for “balanced and informed coverage,” including gross falsification in the service of Israeli rejectionism40 He repeated some of Classics in Politics: The Fateful Triangle Noam Chomsky The Palestinian Uprising 815 the fabrications he has helped establish, for example, that the Palestinians “refuse to come to terms with the existence of Israel, and prefer to offer themselves as sacrifices.”


pages: 427 words: 124,692

Empire: What Ruling the World Did to the British by Jeremy Paxman

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British Empire, call centre, Cape to Cairo, colonial rule, conceptual framework, Etonian, European colonialism, Fellow of the Royal Society, imperial preference, joint-stock company, Khartoum Gordon, Kibera, land tenure, Livingstone, I presume, offshore financial centre, polynesian navigation, Scramble for Africa, transatlantic slave trade

Instead, the imperial mentality found comfort in the revolutionary doctrine of evolution. The anxiety which racked the Church on discovering that, in Darwin’s resonant sentence, ‘Man still bears in his bodily frame the indelible stamp of his lowly origin’ did not shake the conviction of superiority very much. Indeed, in The Descent of Man, Darwin appeared to offer an evolutionary justification for European colonialism. Starting from the premise that ‘the western nations of Europe … now so immeasurably surpass their former savage progenitors, [that they] stand at the summit of civilization’, he determined that ‘the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace the savage races through the world’. Indeed, perhaps the most curious thing of all was the superiority he claimed in seeing descent from a ‘heroic little monkey’ or ‘an old baboon’ instead of from ‘a savage who delights to torture his enemies, offers up bloody sacrifices, practises infanticide without remorse, treats his wives like slaves, knows no decency, and is haunted by the grossest superstitions’.


pages: 598 words: 140,612

Triumph of the City: How Our Greatest Invention Makes Us Richer, Smarter, Greener, Healthier, and Happier by Edward L. Glaeser

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affirmative action, Andrei Shleifer, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Broken windows theory, carbon footprint, Celebration, Florida, clean water, congestion charging, declining real wages, desegregation, diversified portfolio, Edward Glaeser, endowment effect, European colonialism, financial innovation, Frank Gehry, global village, Guggenheim Bilbao, haute cuisine, Home mortgage interest deduction, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, job-hopping, John Snow's cholera map, Mahatma Gandhi, McMansion, megacity, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, New Urbanism, place-making, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent control, RFID, Richard Florida, Rosa Parks, school vouchers, Seaside, Florida, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, Steven Pinker, strikebreaker, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, Works Progress Administration, young professional

Learning in Nagasaki By the middle of the nineteenth century, European military might had proven its technological superiority over most of Asia, but one nation, Japan, remained almost completely independent of European control. When American ships showed up in 1853, Japan agreed to open itself to trade with outsiders, but still more or less on its own terms, and within forty years, Japan had thoroughly mastered Western ways and become a formidable power on the world stage. Between 1894 and 1910, the Japanese beat up the Chinese, just like a European colonial power, defeated Russia, and conquered Korea. By the middle of the twentieth century, the Japanese were building ships and airplanes as good as, and sometimes better than, their American counterparts. How could the Japanese catch up to the West so fast? One answer to this question lies in a city: Nagasaki. The first contacts between Japan and the West took place there in 1543, when Portuguese ships landed on the nearby island of Tanegashima.


pages: 717 words: 150,288

Cities Under Siege: The New Military Urbanism by Stephen Graham

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airport security, anti-communist, autonomous vehicles, Berlin Wall, call centre, carbon footprint, clean water, congestion charging, credit crunch, DARPA: Urban Challenge, defense in depth, deindustrialization, edge city, energy security, European colonialism, failed state, Food sovereignty, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, Google Earth, illegal immigration, income inequality, knowledge economy, late capitalism, loose coupling, market fundamentalism, McMansion, megacity, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, pattern recognition, peak oil, planetary scale, private military company, RAND corporation, RFID, Richard Florida, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, smart transportation, surplus humans, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Washington Consensus, white flight

Such a process, he argues, is working to gradually unravel a ‘classic and long-lasting distinction between an outer face and an inner face of the colonial condition.’6 It is important to stress, then, that the resurgence of explicitly colonial strategies and techniques amongst nation-states such as the US, UK and Israel in the contemporary ‘post-colonial’ period7 involves not just the deployment of the techniques of the new military urbanism in foreign war-zones but their diffusion and imitation through the securitization of Western urban life. As in the nineteenth century, when European colonial nations imported fingerprinting, panoptic prisons and Haussmannian boulevard-building through neighbourhoods of insurrection to domestic cities after first experimenting with them on colonized frontiers, colonial techniques today operate through what Michel Foucault termed ‘boomerang effects.’8 ‘It should never be forgotten’, Foucault wrote, that while colonization, with its techniques and its political and juridical weapons, obviously transported European models to other continents, it also had a considerable boomerang effect on the mechanisms of power in the West, and on the apparatuses, institutions, and techniques of power.


pages: 532 words: 155,470

One Less Car: Bicycling and the Politics of Automobility by Zack Furness, Zachary Mooradian Furness

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active transport: walking or cycling, affirmative action, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, back-to-the-land, Build a better mousetrap, Burning Man, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, colonial rule, conceptual framework, dumpster diving, Enrique Peñalosa, European colonialism, feminist movement, ghettoisation, Golden Gate Park, interchangeable parts, intermodal, Internet Archive, Jane Jacobs, market fundamentalism, means of production, Naomi Klein, New Urbanism, peak oil, place-making, post scarcity, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, sustainable-tourism, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, urban planning, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, working poor, Yom Kippur War

The logic of the “hand up” paradigm presumes that people universally gain a sense of self-worth through the act of consumption or through the processes by which one becomes a consumer in the first place, namely, one’s (forced) participation in a market economy. and while proclaiming the moral and ontological benefits of earning one’s keep may be a commonly held premise in so-called Western societies, it is highly problematic when one considers, for example, the manner in which it was historically exported onto, or more accurately invaded, the african continent. That is to say, the project of European colonialism was instrumental in teaching these socioeconomic lessons through a combination of brutal forced labor practices, genocidal campaigns, and propaganda efforts aimed at emphasizing both the material and spiritual rewards of market-based labor. One of the commodities enlisted in this dual process of cultural pedagogy and capitalist evangelism was, ironically enough, the bicycle. Historian nancy rose Hunt alludes to the use of bicycles among nurses working with missionary and colonial medical professionals in the Belgian Congo during the 1920s.


pages: 497 words: 123,718

A Game as Old as Empire: The Secret World of Economic Hit Men and the Web of Global Corruption by Steven Hiatt; John Perkins

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airline deregulation, Andrei Shleifer, Asian financial crisis, Berlin Wall, big-box store, Bretton Woods, British Empire, capital controls, centre right, clean water, colonial rule, corporate governance, corporate personhood, deglobalization, deindustrialization, Doha Development Round, energy security, European colonialism, financial deregulation, financial independence, full employment, global village, high net worth, land reform, large denomination, Long Term Capital Management, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, Mikhail Gorbachev, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, new economy, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, oil shock, Ponzi scheme, race to the bottom, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, statistical model, structural adjustment programs, too big to fail, trade liberalization, transatlantic slave trade, transfer pricing, union organizing, Washington Consensus, working-age population, Yom Kippur War

Moreover, the two strongest powers, the U.S. and the Soviet Union, seemed to stand on the anti-imperialist side. The U.S. had long pursued an “open door” policy advocating formal independence for developing countries. The Soviet Union had denounced imperialism since its birth in 1917, and the communist movement it led had wide appeal in parts of the colonial world as a result. Nevertheless, the European colonial powers tried to hang on to their possessions as long as they could. Britain did finally “quit India” in 1947, but fought insurgents in Kenya, Cyprus, and Malaya before granting those countries independence. France fought losing, divisive wars in Indochina and Algeria to retain its bit of imperial gloire. Still, around the world the tide of history was clearly running in favor of self-determination.


pages: 476 words: 144,288

1946: The Making of the Modern World by Victor Sebestyen

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anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, British Empire, centre right, clean water, colonial rule, Etonian, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, full employment, illegal immigration, imperial preference, land reform, Mahatma Gandhi, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, moral hazard, operation paperclip

Having had two hundred years’ ‘stewardship’ of the subcontinent, it is hard to see how a further two years would have made much of a difference. For Indian leaders of both sides the British were the problem, not the solution. They did not want the British there. Nehru made the point plain: ‘I would rather have every village in India go up in flames than keep a single British soldier in India a moment longer than necessary,’ he said.10 European colonialism was no longer sustainable. And it effectively ended when the Union flag was lowered at the Vice-regal Lodge in Delhi. Chakravarti Rajagopalachari, who became Governor-General of India a year after the British left, said that if the British had not transferred power when they did ‘there could well have been no power to transfer.’11 28 ‘Half-Nun, Half-Whore’ On the evening of 16 August, some of the best-known authors in Russia were packed into the lecture hall of the Leningrad Writers’ Union, a beautiful building of classical simplicity just off Nevsky Prospekt, the city’s main thoroughfare.


pages: 437 words: 115,594

The Great Surge: The Ascent of the Developing World by Steven Radelet

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Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Asian financial crisis, bank run, Berlin Wall, Branko Milanovic, business climate, business process, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, clean water, colonial rule, demographic dividend, Deng Xiaoping, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Doha Development Round, Erik Brynjolfsson, European colonialism, F. W. de Klerk, failed state, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, income inequality, income per capita, invention of the steam engine, James Watt: steam engine, John Snow's cholera map, Joseph Schumpeter, land reform, low skilled workers, M-Pesa, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, oil shock, out of africa, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, randomized controlled trial, Robert Gordon, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Simon Kuznets, South China Sea, special economic zone, Steven Pinker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, women in the workforce, working poor

Few people in the rest of the world saw much improvement. A huge health gap emerged, mirroring the huge gaps in wealth, education, and other aspects of human welfare that arose in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The rich countries saw enormous gains, while poor countries were left behind. This dynamic began to change in the middle of the twentieth century. Following the end of World War II and the European colonial period, knowledge about good health practices, alongside critical medicines and vaccines, began to spread to developing countries. Child deaths began to fall, disease morbidity began to decline, and life expectancy began to increase, even in most of the world’s poorest countries. The combination of the dramatic declines in infant mortality, reductions in maternal mortality, and fewer deaths from malaria, tuberculosis, measles, and other diseases is translating into much longer and healthier lives.


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Overbooked: The Exploding Business of Travel and Tourism by Elizabeth Becker

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airport security, Asian financial crisis, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, BRICs, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, collective bargaining, colonial rule, computer age, corporate governance, Costa Concordia, Deng Xiaoping, European colonialism, Exxon Valdez, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Frank Gehry, global village, happiness index / gross national happiness, haute cuisine, indoor plumbing, Masdar, Murano, Venice glass, open borders, out of africa, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, Scramble for Africa, Silicon Valley, statistical model, sustainable-tourism, the market place, union organizing, urban renewal, wage slave, young professional, éminence grise

An agreement reached by the nations with ties to Antarctica allows only 100 tourists on the shore at any time and completely prohibits all cruise ships with more than 500 passengers from entering Antarctica’s waters. But Ecuador seems of two minds about tourist restrictions. At the same time, the country is planning to build a new airport to welcome more visitors and boost the $500 million it earns annually from tourists. • • • Since the days of high-riding European colonials, tourism in Africa has been disparaged as an industry that caters to white foreigners who look down on black Africans as “exotic” natives at best. That cultural and racial chasm has been chronicled in numerous anthropological studies. In his description of Maasai dancing staged for tourists in Kenya, the scholar Edward M. Bruner captured this in a series of vignettes. The Sundowner (Hotel) presents Maasai men dancing in the context of an “Out of Africa” cocktail party near an upscale tented safari camp on the Mara reserve.


pages: 479 words: 144,453

Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari

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23andMe, agricultural Revolution, algorithmic trading, Anne Wojcicki, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, autonomous vehicles, Berlin Wall, call centre, Chris Urmson, cognitive dissonance, Columbian Exchange, computer age, Deng Xiaoping, don't be evil, European colonialism, experimental subject, falling living standards, Flash crash, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, glass ceiling, global village, invention of writing, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, job automation, Kevin Kelly, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, Minecraft, Moneyball by Michael Lewis explains big data, mutually assured destruction, new economy, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, placebo effect, Ray Kurzweil, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, stem cell, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, too big to fail, trade route, Turing machine, Turing test, ultimatum game, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!

They took out an empty map of Africa, spread it over a well-polished Berlin table, sketched lines here and there, and divided the continent between them. When the Europeans penetrated the African interior, armed with the agreed-upon map, they discovered that many of the borders drawn in Berlin hardly did justice to the geographic, economic and ethnic reality of Africa. However, to avoid renewed clashes, the invaders stuck to their agreements, and these imaginary lines became the actual borders of European colonies. During the second half of the twentieth century, as the European empires disintegrated and the colonies gained their independence, the new countries accepted the colonial borders, fearing that the alternative would be endless wars and conflicts. Many of the difficulties faced by present-day African countries stem from the fact that their borders make little sense. When the written fantasies of European bureaucracies encountered the African reality, reality was forced to surrender.5 The modern educational system provides numerous other examples of reality bowing down to written records.


pages: 1,205 words: 308,891

Bourgeois Dignity: Why Economics Can't Explain the Modern World by Deirdre N. McCloskey

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Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, BRICs, British Empire, butterfly effect, Carmen Reinhart, clockwork universe, computer age, Corn Laws, dark matter, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Donald Trump, Edward Lorenz: Chaos theory, European colonialism, experimental economics, financial innovation, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, George Akerlof, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, greed is good, Howard Zinn, income per capita, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of air conditioning, invention of writing, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John Snow's cholera map, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge economy, means of production, Naomi Klein, New Economic Geography, New Urbanism, purchasing power parity, rent-seeking, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Scientific racism, Scramble for Africa, Shenzhen was a fishing village, Simon Kuznets, Slavoj Žižek, spinning jenny, Steven Pinker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, total factor productivity, transaction costs, tulip mania, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, urban renewal, V2 rocket, very high income, working poor, World Values Survey, Yogi Berra

But the economies of the West would adjust, rather as they adjusted to $150-abarrel oil for a while in 2008, or to the abolition of slavery in British Empire in 1833-40, or to the papal decision in 1537 that native Americans were to be treated as though they had souls. The one exception to the post-War loss of a literal empire supported by guns and tanks, that of Russia, was a failure. Russian income per head grew more slowly enchained to its Eastern European colonies than it would have if by some happy miracle it had adopted Western innovation in 1945. Look at East Germany vs. West, where the controlled experiment was in fact tried. 223 Labor productivity in Ossi factories ended in 1991 at one-third what it was in Wessi factories.21 That is, we cannot account for the riches of rich countries by reference to exploitation of poor people. This, to repeat, is not to say that there was no exploitation — that British or Belgian or French or Spanish or Portuguese imperialism was good news for the people imperialized.

Culture and Prosperity: The Truth About Markets - Why Some Nations Are Rich but Most Remain Poor by John Kay

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Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, Barry Marshall: ulcers, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, California gold rush, complexity theory, computer age, constrained optimization, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, correlation does not imply causation, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, double helix, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, equity premium, Ernest Rutherford, European colonialism, experimental economics, Exxon Valdez, failed state, financial innovation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Akerlof, George Gilder, greed is good, haute couture, illegal immigration, income inequality, invention of the telephone, invention of the wheel, invisible hand, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, labour market flexibility, late capitalism, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, Mahatma Gandhi, market bubble, market clearing, market fundamentalism, means of production, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, Nash equilibrium, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, pets.com, popular electronics, price discrimination, price mechanism, prisoner's dilemma, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, random walk, rent-seeking, risk tolerance, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, second-price auction, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, The Predators' Ball, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, transaction costs, tulip mania, urban decay, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, yield curve, yield management

Culture and Prosperity {59} Colonies such as India or Indonesia in which immigrants were a minority are not rich states-not even those colonies where settlements were large, as in South Africa, Kenya, or the West Indies. The countries of settlement not only imported technology and institutions from Western Europe: they also imported people familiar with that technology and those institutions. In European colonies the native population was not encouraged-and often, until late stages of colonialism, not permitted-to assimilate and be assimilated by the imported culture. The transfer of technology and institutions was superficial and transitory. But even if the building blocks of the market economy were imported, these new countries had to solve one problem for themselves. By the nature of settlement, there is no established system of property in land when settlers arrive in an empty territory.


pages: 382 words: 127,510

Outposts: Journeys to the Surviving Relics of the British Empire by Simon Winchester

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borderless world, British Empire, colonial rule, Corn Laws, Edmond Halley, European colonialism, illegal immigration, Khyber Pass, laissez-faire capitalism, offshore financial centre, sensible shoes, South China Sea, special economic zone, the market place

(Britain’s European possessions have never been numerous, despite convenience and closeness. She had Heligoland in the North Sea, and from Port Mahon in Minorca the Royal Navy ran the Balearic Islands. There were the Ionian Islands, and Malta, of course, and Cyprus (though hardly a European possession). And the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, which are not colonies, but direct dependencies of the Crown and lie outside the United Kingdom. Gibraltar is the only unquestioned European colony that remains, and is definitely the only British Imperial possession that there ever has been on the continent of Europe itself.) It took the best part of a week to climb up from the valley of the Guadalquivir to the limestone mountain chain of which Gibraltar was an outlier. I had to pass through tuna-fishing villages, where I would sip ice-cold fino and discuss the price of albacore; I stopped for half a day to inspect the great lighthouse at Cape Trafalgar—where it turned out that only one of a dozen Andalucians I questioned had ever heard of Nelson, or Villeneuve, most Spaniards evidently preferring to linger on Spain’s victories rather than her defeats.

The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community by David C. Korten

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Albert Einstein, banks create money, big-box store, Bretton Woods, British Empire, clean water, colonial rule, Community Supported Agriculture, death of newspapers, declining real wages, European colonialism, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, George Gilder, global supply chain, global village, Hernando de Soto, Howard Zinn, informal economy, invisible hand, joint-stock company, land reform, market bubble, market fundamentalism, Monroe Doctrine, Naomi Klein, neoliberal agenda, new economy, peak oil, planetary scale, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, South Sea Bubble, stem cell, structural adjustment programs, The Chicago School, trade route, Washington Consensus, World Values Survey

Gradually they build the power to transform or displace the institutions of the dominant culture. The Opportunity 85 Such communities and alliances formed in significant numbers during the latter half of the twentieth century to bring forth great social movements for national independence, human and civil rights, women’s rights, peace, environmental protection, and economic justice. During a period of only fifty years these movements dismantled the prevailing system of European colonial empires, codified human rights in international law, rewrote the legal codes of nations, and redefined the prevailing cultural codes regarding relationships among men and women, races, nations, and species. These alliances are now linking into the most powerful and truly global social movement in the whole of the human experience. Birthing Global Civil Society The alliance-building processes that gave birth to this global metamovement became visible only in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro during the UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), at which the world’s heads of state gathered for an Earth Summit.


pages: 538 words: 138,544

The Story of Stuff: The Impact of Overconsumption on the Planet, Our Communities, and Our Health-And How We Can Make It Better by Annie Leonard

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air freight, banking crisis, big-box store, blood diamonds, Bretton Woods, California gold rush, carbon footprint, clean water, Community Supported Agriculture, dematerialisation, employer provided health coverage, energy security, European colonialism, Firefox, Food sovereignty, Ford paid five dollars a day, full employment, global supply chain, income inequality, Indoor air pollution, intermodal, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, McMansion, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, Ralph Nader, renewable energy credits, Silicon Valley, special economic zone, supply-chain management, the built environment, trade liberalization, trickle-down economics, union organizing, Wall-E, Whole Earth Review, Zipcar

The IMF was created to deal with financial imbalances between countries: its primary role was to keep the world’s currencies stable and exchangeable in order to support international trade and to provide emergency loans to any country whose economy was in such bad shape that it couldn’t participate in global trade. The World Bank was created specifically to loan money to the governments of countries devastated by World War II so they could rebuild their economies and rejoin global trade. Soon, the World Bank shifted its focus to countries and European colonies in Latin America, Africa, and Asia. The GATT was a complicated treaty set up to reduce national barriers to trade; in 1995 it was replaced by the international organization known as the World Trade Organization (WTO), which has even broader-reaching powers. Note that these are only the three largest of these organizations; there are dozens of additional multilateral banks, government agencies, and trade agreements that replicate the IMF/World Bank/WTO model in regional or sector-specific forms.104 Although some of the original intentions behind these institutions may have been good, their evolution over the past half century has had disastrous results for the great majority of people on the planet, and for the planet itself.


pages: 1,351 words: 404,177

Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America by Rick Perlstein

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affirmative action, Alistair Cooke, Bay Area Rapid Transit, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, cognitive dissonance, cuban missile crisis, delayed gratification, desegregation, East Village, European colonialism, full employment, Golden Gate Park, Haight Ashbury, immigration reform, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, index card, indoor plumbing, Mahatma Gandhi, Marshall McLuhan, Monroe Doctrine, New Urbanism, Own Your Own Home, Plutocrats, plutocrats, price mechanism, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, the medium is the message, traveling salesman, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, walking around money, War on Poverty, Whole Earth Catalog

We were supposed to be defending a “country” called “South Vietnam.” But South Vietnam was not quite a country at all. Vietnamese independence fighters had begun battling the French since practically the day they stopped fighting side by side in World War II. In 1954 they fought their colonial overlords to a final defeat at the stronghold of Dien Bien Phu. It was the first military loss for a European colonial power in three hundred years. Though these stalwarts, the Vietminh, now controlled four-fifths of the country’s territory, at the peace conference in Geneva they made a concession: they agreed to administer an armistice area half that size, demarcated at the seventeenth parallel (but for some last-minute haggling, it would have been the eighteenth). A government loyal to the French would administer the lands to the south.

The lead paragraph began, “A massive study of how the United States went to war in Indochina, conducted by the Pentagon three years ago, demonstrates that four administrations progressively developed a sense of commitment to a non-Communist Vietnam, a readiness to fight the North to protect the South, and an ultimate frustration with this effort—to a much greater extent than their public statements acknowledged at the time.” It was a polite way of saying Americans had been lied to for twenty-five years. The lies went back to Harry Truman, the article explained. Military aid to France had “directly involved” the United States in preserving a European colony; the Eisenhower administration played “a direct role in the ultimate breakdown in the Geneva settlement” and the cancellation of free elections scheduled for 1956. (President Nixon always said honoring Geneva was the reason we had to continue the war.) Kennedy—this in the Pentagon study’s words—transformed the “limited-risk gamble” he inherited into a “broad commitment.” Lyndon Johnson laid plans for full-fledged war as early as the spring of 1964—campaigning against Barry Goldwater with the line “We seek no wider war.”


pages: 446 words: 578

The end of history and the last man by Francis Fukuyama

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affirmative action, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Bonfire of the Vanities, centre right, cuban missile crisis, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, European colonialism, F. W. de Klerk, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, Gini coefficient, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, Isaac Newton, Joseph Schumpeter, kremlinology, labour mobility, land reform, Mikhail Gorbachev, nuclear winter, open economy, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Socratic dialogue, strikebreaker, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions

U n d e r the slogan "Rich C o u n t r y , Strong A r m y , " the new leadership of J a p a n replaced old temple schools with a system of compulsory education administered by the state, recruited a mass 4 5 The Mechanism of Desire 75 peasant a r m y in place of the samurai warriors, and established national taxation, banking, and currency systems. T h e wholesale transformation of J a p a n e s e society b r o u g h t about d u r i n g the Meiji restoration and the re-centralization of the J a p a n e s e state was motivated by an u r g e n t sense that J a p a n had to learn to absorb Western technology if it was not to lose its national independence to European colonialism, as China had d o n e . 6 In other cases, ignominious defeat in w a r has been the spur to the adoption o f rationalizing social r e f o r m . T h e r e f o r m s of v o m Stein, Scharnhorst, and Gneisenau in Prussia w e r e motivated by a recognition that Napoleon had been able to defeat their country at J e n a - A u e r s t a d t so easily because of the backwardness o f the Prussian state and its total alienation f r o m society.


pages: 728 words: 182,850

Cooking for Geeks by Jeff Potter

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3D printing, A Pattern Language, carbon footprint, centre right, Community Supported Agriculture, crowdsourcing, double helix, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, fear of failure, food miles, hacker house, haute cuisine, helicopter parent, Internet Archive, iterative process, Parkinson's law, placebo effect, random walk, slashdot, stochastic process, the scientific method

Japanese and Classic European? Go for miso ice cream; it’s salty and sweet, and delicious! Fusion cooking often results from the mixing of two cultures via immigration. There are plenty of fusion-like dishes that have come out of cultures situated where two different regions meet or two different cultures mingle: Mediterranean (North African + Southern European), Southeast Asian (Asian + European colonialism), and Caribbean (African + Western European), for example. Israeli markets carry ingredients from the surrounding western regions of North Africa (especially Moroccan) and Eastern Europe; their cuisine is influenced by the traditions of both areas. Modern Vietnamese food was heavily impacted by French occupation in the 19th century. The United States is perhaps the most diverse example of fusion cooking; with so many different cultures mingling, you might not even think of using the term "fusion" to describe our cuisine, but it is.


pages: 564 words: 178,408

Citizens of London: The Americans Who Stood With Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour by Lynne Olson

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Alistair Cooke, Bretton Woods, British Empire, colonial rule, European colonialism, financial independence, full employment, imperial preference, indoor plumbing, South China Sea, V2 rocket

Having emerged from World War II as the mightiest country in the world, the United States was serenely convinced of its own omnipotence. Initially, it had little interest in close collaboration or partnership with its former Western allies, whose empires and global influence were fast disintegrating. Indeed, within months after the war, the United States had begun to displace Britain, France, and the other European colonial powers as the main economic and military force in Southeast Asia, the Pacific region, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East. At the end of the conflict, the United States had briefly envisioned the Soviet Union as its main partner in dealing with postwar international problems. The onset of the Cold War, however, put an end to that notion, as well as to Roosevelt’s plan for a speedy American withdrawal from European affairs.


pages: 687 words: 209,474

Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East by Michael B. Oren

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Boycotts of Israel, British Empire, cuban missile crisis, European colonialism, friendly fire, open economy, Yom Kippur War

He found Ben-Gurion closed to territorial concessions but willing to meet Nasser anywhere, anytime. But Nasser first made light of the mission—Why risk talking with Israel for the sake of the Baghdad Pact? he asked—then refused to receive Anderson at all. Thereafter, Eisenhower approved another top-secret project—Omega—geared to toppling Nasser by all methods except assassination.16 Washington indeed disliked Nasser, but it abhorred European colonialism even more. Though signatory with France and Britain to the 1950 Tripartite Declaration prohibiting any attempt to alter Middle East borders by force, the United States refused to regard the Canal’s nationalization as such an attempt, or to sanction the use of force against Egypt. A succession of international initiatives followed, all aimed at resolving the crisis, all notable for their lack of teeth.


pages: 589 words: 197,971

A Fiery Peace in a Cold War: Bernard Schriever and the Ultimate Weapon by Neil Sheehan

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Albert Einstein, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, British Empire, cuban missile crisis, double helix, European colonialism, John von Neumann, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, mutually assured destruction, nuclear winter, operation paperclip, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, uranium enrichment

Now that it was their turn to lead, they were not, like the Europeans, going to lose the peace gained by their victory over Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan through similarly weak behavior toward Stalin and the forces of “International Communism.” Acheson had in his cultural heritage the stabilizing model of the British Empire when the Royal Navy had dominated the seas and “Pax Britannica” had ruled nearly a quarter of the earth’s landmass and peoples. The “Pax Americana” that he and Truman and their associates intended to create was not, however, going to be an exploitative system akin to British and European colonialism. Outright colonies were unacceptable to the American political conscience. The one formal colony the United States had possessed, the Philippines, wrested from Spain at the turn of the twentieth century, had been given its independence in 1945. What the United States sought were surrogate governments friendly to American power, free to run their internal affairs as they wished as long as they agreed with Washington in matters of foreign policy.


pages: 585 words: 165,304

Trust: The Social Virtue and the Creation of Prosperity by Francis Fukuyama

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barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, blue-collar work, business climate, capital controls, collective bargaining, corporate governance, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, double entry bookkeeping, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, George Gilder, glass ceiling, global village, hiring and firing, industrial robot, Jane Jacobs, job satisfaction, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, land reform, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, mittelstand, price mechanism, profit maximization, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Ronald Coase, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Nature of the Firm, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, transfer pricing, traveling salesman, union organizing

The Chinese do, of course, have a highly developed sense of national identity supported by their old and rich common culture. As we have seen, national identity was undergirded by political Confucianism in traditional China, which laid down a series of obligations to a hierarchy of political authorities, culminating in the emperor. A negative, antiforeigner sense of national identity was forged in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries by China’s occupation, first by European colonial powers and then by Japan. In the twentieth century, the Chinese Communist party tried to put itself in place of the emperor and acquired an aura of nationalist legitimacy by virtue of its role in the struggle against the Japanese. But from dynastic times up through the communist victory in 1949, the primary loyalties of individual Chinese have been not to whatever political authorities were in power but to their families.

Understanding Power by Noam Chomsky

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anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, British Empire, Burning Man, business climate, cognitive dissonance, continuous integration, Corn Laws, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, feminist movement, global reserve currency, Howard Zinn, labour market flexibility, Mahatma Gandhi, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, mortgage tax deduction, Ralph Nader, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, school choice, strikebreaker, structural adjustment programs, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, union organizing, wage slave, women in the workforce

It wasn’t that they didn’t like Saddam Hussein—they didn’t care about Saddam Hussein one way or the other. It was that after the Gulf War was over, the U.S. was in a perfect position to ram through its rejectionist program and fully extend the Monroe Doctrine to the Middle East [the Monroe Doctrine was proclaimed by the U.S. in 1823 and stated that Latin America was the exclusive domain of the United States, not the European colonial powers]. It was our way of saying: “Look, this is our turf, we’ll do what we feel like here.” As George Bush in fact put it: “What we say goes.” 105 Now the world understands that; the Gulf War helped them understand it. Bosnia: Intervention Questions MAN: Noam, do you recall any major issues on which your views have totally flip-flopped at some point, perhaps by thinking them out more or something like that?


pages: 851 words: 247,711

The Atlantic and Its Enemies: A History of the Cold War by Norman Stone

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affirmative action, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, bank run, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bonfire of the Vanities, Bretton Woods, British Empire, central bank independence, Deng Xiaoping, desegregation, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, European colonialism, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, Henry Ford's grandson gave labor union leader Walter Reuther a tour of the company’s new, automated factory…, illegal immigration, income per capita, interchangeable parts, Jane Jacobs, Joseph Schumpeter, labour mobility, land reform, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, new economy, North Sea oil, oil shock, Ponzi scheme, price mechanism, price stability, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, special drawing rights, Steve Jobs, strikebreaker, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, trade liberalization, trickle-down economics, V2 rocket, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus, Yom Kippur War, éminence grise

The British had been responsible for the industrial north-west, and had been parting with food to keep it going at a time when their own rations were poorer than during the war itself, when the Americans had helped out. On 1 January 1947 they agreed to put their own zone together with the American one, based on Frankfurt: the result, most of what was to be West Germany, was called ‘Bizonia’, but that too did not work any too well. The German problem went together with others, worldwide. Japan, her capital almost flattened, and two principal cities nuclear ruins, was prostrate; European colonies in south-eastern Asia were hardly governable. Especially, a vast civil war was brewing in China. The Chinese Communists had acquired a solid base, with Soviet help and with captured Japanese weaponry, in Manchuria, and it was traditionally from there that China was conquered. But Stalin was probing in other areas as well. Himself from the Caucasus, he wanted to reassert Russia’s old dominance in the northern Middle East, a dominance that had been lost after the First World War, and he prided himself on restoring the Tsarist empire.


pages: 699 words: 192,704

Heaven's Command (Pax Britannica) by Jan Morris

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British Empire, Cape to Cairo, centralized clearinghouse, Corn Laws, European colonialism, Fellow of the Royal Society, Khartoum Gordon, Khyber Pass, land reform, land tenure, Livingstone, I presume, Magellanic Cloud, means of production, Monroe Doctrine, Plutocrats, plutocrats, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Scramble for Africa, trade route

By the 1840s, nevertheless, there was pressure from eastern Canada to open up the west for colonization. To the south the Americans were pursuing their own manifest destiny boldly across the prairies, and the eastern Canadians wanted the same freedom to expand—besides, they were afraid that if they did not move into that tempting vacuum, the Americans would. Since 1811 there had in feet been one isolated European colony in the heart of the Canadian west. It stood at the confluence of the Red River and the Assiniboine, two of the chief thoroughfares of central Canada. There an idealistic young peer, Lord Selkirk, had planted a colony of Scotsmen and Irishmen, on a land grant of 116,000 square miles allowed him by the Company—of which, as it happened, he was a substantial stockholder.2 Their progress had been fitful.

The Washington Connection and Third World Fascism by Noam Chomsky

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anti-communist, business climate, colonial rule, declining real wages, deliberate practice, European colonialism, friendly fire, Gini coefficient, income inequality, income per capita, land reform, land tenure, new economy, RAND corporation, strikebreaker, union organizing

The press conference in England was covered by the British and Western European media and led to a Parliamentary debate and Resolution. The Reuters dispatch describing these events was picked up in Latin America—even in Paraguay—but it was almost totally ignored in the U.S. One might imagine that it is the U.S. tradition of brutal maltreatment of “inconvenient natives” (merely a chapter in the sordid history of European colonial expansion), or standard racist unconcern, that keeps the media from taking allegations of genocide seriously in U.S. domains. While there is no doubt some truth in that explanation, it is only a partial one. Thus, the New York Times offers front-page coverage to threats posed to native hill tribesmen in postwar Indochina, fabricating the required evidence, as we shall see below (Volume II, chapter 4).


pages: 743 words: 201,651

Free Speech: Ten Principles for a Connected World by Timothy Garton Ash

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A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Andrew Keen, Apple II, Ayatollah Khomeini, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, British Empire, Cass Sunstein, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, Clapham omnibus, colonial rule, crowdsourcing, David Attenborough, don't be evil, Edward Snowden, Etonian, European colonialism, eurozone crisis, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Ferguson, Missouri, Filter Bubble, financial independence, Firefox, Galaxy Zoo, global village, index card, Internet Archive, invention of movable type, invention of writing, Jaron Lanier, jimmy wales, Julian Assange, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, megacity, mutually assured destruction, national security letter, Netflix Prize, Nicholas Carr, obamacare, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Thiel, pre–internet, profit motive, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, semantic web, Silicon Valley, Simon Singh, Snapchat, social graph, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wisdom of Crowds, Turing test, We are Anonymous. We are Legion, WikiLeaks, World Values Survey, Yom Kippur War

Latin America also has regional institutions, weaker than those in Europe but far from irrelevant. A provision of the Chilean constitution was actually amended in response to a judgement of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, which ruled that Chile should not have banned a film called ‘The Last Temptation of Christ’.129 Some of these traditions and values may have come originally in the wake of European colonialism, but even where they did, they have taken root in local soil and been changed in the process. South Africa combines a Dutch and English legal heritage with strong native traditions, memorably evoked in Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom. A comparable blending can be observed in English-, French-, Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries around the world, from Australia to Chile and Kenya to Venezuela.


pages: 492 words: 70,082

Immigration worldwide: policies, practices, and trends by Uma Anand Segal, Doreen Elliott, Nazneen S. Mayadas

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affirmative action, Asian financial crisis, Berlin Wall, borderless world, British Empire, Celtic Tiger, centre right, conceptual framework, credit crunch, demographic transition, deskilling, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial independence, full employment, global village, guest worker program, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, income per capita, informal economy, knowledge economy, labor-force participation, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, low skilled workers, minimum wage unemployment, New Urbanism, open borders, phenotype, South China Sea, structural adjustment programs, trade route, transaction costs, upwardly mobile, urban planning, women in the workforce

In addition to the major outflows of New Zealanders, which reached almost 500,000 for the decade ending March 2008, there has been some significant remigration of immigrants. During the three decades, over 400,000 citizens of countries other than New Zealand left the country after periods in residence of 12 months or more. Until the late 1980s the great majority of New Zealand’s immigrants came from a small number of ‘‘traditional’’ source countries—the United Kingdom (the European colonial power in the nineteenth century), Australia (the neighboring British colony that was an important source of immigrants to New Zealand in the nineteenth and the first half of the twentieth centuries), the Pacific Islands (also the original source of the Maori population), parts of northern and western Europe (especially Scandinavia in the nineteenth century and the Netherlands from the 1950s), and from Canada and the United States (but smaller flows than from Europe).


pages: 935 words: 267,358

Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty

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accounting loophole / creative accounting, Asian financial crisis, banking crisis, banks create money, Berlin Wall, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, central bank independence, collapse of Lehman Brothers, conceptual framework, corporate governance, correlation coefficient, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, demographic transition, distributed generation, diversification, diversified portfolio, European colonialism, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial intermediation, full employment, German hyperinflation, Gini coefficient, high net worth, Honoré de Balzac, immigration reform, income inequality, income per capita, index card, inflation targeting, informal economy, invention of the steam engine, invisible hand, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, market bubble, means of production, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, open economy, pension reform, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, randomized controlled trial, refrigerator car, regulatory arbitrage, rent control, rent-seeking, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Simon Kuznets, sovereign wealth fund, Steve Jobs, The Nature of the Firm, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade liberalization, very high income, We are the 99%

There is no guarantee, however, that the process will always be peaceful: no one knows the precise location of the psychological and political boundaries that must not be crossed when it comes to the ownership of one country by another. Will China Own the World? The sovereign wealth funds of non-petroleum-exporting countries raise a different kind of problem. Why would a country with no particular natural resources to speak of decide to own another country? One possibility is of course neocolonial ambitions, a pure will to power, as in the era of European colonialism. But the difference is that in those days the European countries enjoyed a technological advantage that ensured their domination. China and other emerging nonpetroleum countries are growing very rapidly, to be sure, but the evidence suggests that this rapid growth will end once they catch up with the leaders in terms of productivity and standard of living. The diffusion of knowledge and productive technologies is a fundamentally equalizing process: once the less advanced countries catch up with the more advanced, they cease to grow more rapidly.


pages: 1,056 words: 275,211

Hirohito and the Making of Modern Japan by Herbert P. Bix

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anti-communist, British Empire, colonial rule, defense in depth, European colonialism, land reform, Malacca Straits, Monroe Doctrine, nuremberg principles, oil shock, Ronald Reagan, South China Sea

This question revealed not only that Hirohito expected an early German victory but that he had also begun to consider the possibility of deploying troops in both Indochina and the Dutch East Indies, now that the French and Dutch had been conquered by the Germans, even if the less opportunistic side of his personality recoiled at the idea of doing so.31 When the problem of French Indochina arose again the next day in a conversation with Kido, the emperor revealed both his keen concern with appearances and his genuine vacillation over what to do about the undefended European colonies. Conscious of the ideological ideals that he, defender of the nation’s moral integrity, was expected to uphold, he remarked that, historically, “there were actions such as those taken by Frederick and Napoleon.” But “our country does not want to act in such Machiavellian ways. Shouldn’t we always try to bear in mind the true spirit of hakk ichi’u [benevolent rule], which has been our policy since the age of the gods.”32 Avowing “benevolent rule” and disavowing Machiavellianism, while simultaneously sanctioning the use of poison gas against the Chinese—these contradictory acts reveal Hirohito’s divided nature.


pages: 1,590 words: 353,834

God's Bankers: A History of Money and Power at the Vatican by Gerald Posner

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Albert Einstein, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, bank run, banking crisis, Bretton Woods, central bank independence, centralized clearinghouse, credit crunch, dividend-yielding stocks, European colonialism, forensic accounting, Index librorum prohibitorum, medical malpractice, Murano, Venice glass, offshore financial centre, oil shock, operation paperclip, rent control, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, WikiLeaks, Yom Kippur War

The Italians swept through the holy capital of Axum (sending a sacred obelisk back to Rome as a trophy for capturing the city).III The Ethiopian campaign was an essential part of Mussolini’s grand ambition to re-create an Italian empire that stretched without interruption from southern Europe through central and east Africa. Ethiopia—then Abyssinia—was a prime candidate for Il Duce’s expansionist policies. It was one of the few African nations not already a European colony. France and Britain had large empires and several other European countries boasted African colonies.54 Mineral-rich Ethiopia was a natural extension of Italy’s Eritrean colony to the northwest and Italian Somaliland on the east. And finally, Mussolini was in part avenging Italy’s defeat during the First Italian-Abyssinian War thirty-nine years earlier. The invasion was brutal. Although Italy had signed the 1925 Geneva Protocol governing the acceptable conduct of war, Mussolini’s troops ignored those rules.


pages: 1,351 words: 385,579

The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined by Steven Pinker

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1960s counterculture, affirmative action, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Albert Einstein, availability heuristic, Berlin Wall, Bonfire of the Vanities, British Empire, Broken windows theory, California gold rush, Cass Sunstein, citation needed, clean water, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, Columbine, computer age, conceptual framework, correlation coefficient, correlation does not imply causation, crack epidemic, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Brooks, delayed gratification, demographic transition, desegregation, Doomsday Clock, Douglas Hofstadter, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, experimental subject, facts on the ground, failed state, first-past-the-post, Flynn Effect, food miles, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, fudge factor, full employment, ghettoisation, Gini coefficient, global village, Henri Poincaré, impulse control, income inequality, informal economy, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, lake wobegon effect, libertarian paternalism, loss aversion, Marshall McLuhan, McMansion, means of production, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, mutually assured destruction, open economy, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Singer: altruism, QWERTY keyboard, race to the bottom, Ralph Waldo Emerson, random walk, Republic of Letters, Richard Thaler, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Saturday Night Live, security theater, Skype, Slavoj Žižek, South China Sea, statistical model, stem cell, Steven Levy, Steven Pinker, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, theory of mind, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, Turing machine, ultimatum game, uranium enrichment, V2 rocket, Walter Mischel, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce

It would be natural for them to ask, ‘What kind of god would create such a world?’ A plausible answer was: a sadistic god, a god who liked to see people bleed and suffer.”13 So, they might think, if these gods have a minimum daily requirement of human gore, why not be proactive about it? Better him than me. Human sacrifice was eliminated in some parts of the world by Christian proselytizers, such as Saint Patrick in Ireland, and in others by European colonial powers like the British in Africa and India. Charles Napier, the British army’s commander in chief in India, faced with local complaints about the abolition of suttee, replied, “You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows.


pages: 1,445 words: 469,426

The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money & Power by Daniel Yergin

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anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, bank run, Berlin Wall, British Empire, colonial exploitation, Columbine, cuban missile crisis, energy security, European colonialism, Exxon Valdez, financial independence, fudge factor, informal economy, joint-stock company, land reform, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, new economy, North Sea oil, oil rush, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, postnationalism / post nation state, price stability, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Thomas Malthus, Yom Kippur War

The next year, just two months before he succeeded Churchill as Prime Minister, Eden made a stop in Cairo, where he startled Nasser by speaking—and telling Arabic proverbs—in Arabic. There was the hope, of course, that the British government could remain on reasonable terms with Egypt, but this hope faded when Nasser attempted to incorporate the separate country of the Sudan into his Greater Egypt.[3] Nasser was viewed more tolerantly in Washington, where the Administration and many in Congress tended to adopt an attitude of moral superiority toward the European colonial powers, combined with a desire to see them divest themselves of their empires more quickly. The Americans believed that the relics of colonialism were an enormous handicap for the West in its struggle with communism and the Soviet Union. The Suez Canal Company, despite the economic and strategic significance of the waterway, was one of the most visible of these relics. The chairman of the canal company would later observe bitterly that, to Americans, "the company had a certain musty, nineteenth century odor derived from that lamentable colonial period."