Exploring the history and experiences of mixed heritage persons and inter-racial relationships across the world

Colonialism Part II

Dutch Colonial TroopsInternal European politics, wars and squabbles meant that many of the colonies in the Americas became independent and with the abolition of slavery, the European countries turned their attention to Asia in the early part of the 2nd colonisation period.
The Dutch, British, and French followed the Portuguese, whose Asian colonial empire had started in 1502 in Kollam, into India in the early 17th century. By the 19th century, the British had assumed direct and indirect control over most of India.  By 1898, most of the East Indies i.e. Southeast Asia had been craved, just like Africa, between the major European powers. 

The second part of late colonisation period is the period mainly known for the scramble for Africa.  If you looked at a map of the world in 1885 (http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Colonisation_1885.png), India was now mainly in British hands and the route there was eased by the Cape Of Good Hope also being in their hands.  A glance at the Americas will reveal a lot of the great losses of colonies for the European counties with only the north east coast and the Islands of the West Indies the remaining outposts of colonial imperialism.

The Europeans' reluctance to move from their trading posts on the coast of Africa where alleviated by explorations by people like David Livingstone and Dr Henry Stanley, whose map of the Congo Basin preceded chaotic European expansion in the area and advances in medicine.  The shenanigans lead to the Berlin Conference or "Congo Conference" of 1884-85 attempted to regulate this scramble heralding the establishment of Germany as a new power in Europe.  Dr Stanley was later quite instrumental in the Belgium King, Léopold II gaining control of the Congo as a personal, not national, asset.

The scramble continues with some rule breaking and bending but the official British annexation of Egypt in 1914 ended the colonial division of Africa. By this point, all of Africa, with the exceptions of Liberia and Ethiopia, was under European rule.

Statue Of Cecil John Rhodes Oxford EngThere are a number of things to bear in mind when considering Africa's colonisation and it's following history.  One of the major differences was whether a colony was a settler or non-settler colony.  In settler colonies, land and resources where appropriated for the benefit of the European descendants who had no intention of returning to the motherland.  In non-settler colonies, trading and mining were more likely the economic activities with the colonialist's manpower all serving a term with a view to returning to the motherland more prosperous than when they arrived.  This difference makes for a marked difference in the results of the inter-racial breeding that took place.  In settler colonies like South Africa and Zimbabwe (Southern Rhodesia), this led to a separate community to accommodate people of mixed heritage.  In non-settler colonies, the mixed race children were normally absorbed back into the local native environment and their heritage lost except at the genetic level.

The island outpost colonised earlier than the rest of Africa, mainly by the Portuguese have marked mixed heritage population mostly due the length of the occupation and the inter breeding of mixed race people amongst themselves.

In the latter part of African colonialism, most settler colonies actively discourages inter racial breeding as the population of white people increased.  There were attempts to reduce the rights of the mixed race populations as in Mozambique in order to discourage such behaviour.  Despite the Second World War and independence wars, some African countries do have identifiable mixed heritage populations as a result of colonial settler expansion.