Help support TMP

"Scramble for Africa: How the African continent became " Topic

6 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the Victorian Colonial Board Message Board

Back to the Early 20th Century Discussion Message Board

Back to the 19th Century Discussion Message Board

568 hits since 16 Apr 2018
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP16 Apr 2018 12:34 p.m. PST


"The Scramble for Africa, also known as the Race for Africa or Partition of Africa was a process of invasion, occupation, colonization and annexation of African territory by European powers during the New Imperialism period, between 1881 and World War I in 1914. As a result of the heightened tension between European states in the last quarter of the 19th century, the partitioning of Africa may be seen as a way for the Europeans to eliminate the threat of a Europe-wide war over Africa. The last 59 years of the 19th century saw transition from ‘informal imperialism' of control through military influence and economic dominance to that of direct rule.

Attempts to mediate imperial competition, such as the Berlin Conference (1884–1885), failed to establish definitively the competing powers' claims. Many African polities, states and rulers (such as the Ashanti, the Abyssinians, the Moroccans, the Dervishes and the Zulus) sought to resist this wave of European aggression. However, the industrial revolution had provided the European armies with advanced weapons such as machine guns, which African armies found difficult to resist (with the exception of the Abyssinians, who were indeed successful). Also, unlike their European counterparts, African rulers, states and people did not at first form a continental united front although within a few years, a Pan-African movement did emerge…"
Main page


Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP16 Apr 2018 12:45 p.m. PST

The old adage made sense back then: "divide and conquer"

Now, if they had known they would be held responsible for the inability of those countries to peacefully co-inhabit with each other, they might have done things a bit differently.

But that's just the luxury of 20/20 hindsight.

Our big mistake today would be to judge people and actions of centuries past based on our modern sensibilities and values, and based on what we now know of how history developed there after their role was over with. Authors today keep making that mistake over and over, and keep trying to convince their readers to join them in that folly.

Now, for something to get "divided" it must have first been "united", a unit. Africa was never that. It was never at peace*. But now, instead of blaming each other for that, they get to blame the outsiders. :)

* And the same extreme intertribal violence and ancient feuds continue to this very day, now that the colonial powers are out of the picture.
TMP link

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP16 Apr 2018 3:55 p.m. PST

Dos anyone view the Ottoman Empire and the Omani Sultanate (specially Zanzibar) as colonial powers in Africa?

Or are they exempt from that title and the ignominy that comes with it?


marco56 Supporting Member of TMP16 Apr 2018 6:21 p.m. PST



Lion in the Stars17 Apr 2018 6:54 a.m. PST

Dos anyone view the Ottoman Empire and the Omani Sultanate (specially Zanzibar) as colonial powers in Africa?

Or are they exempt from that title and the ignominy that comes with it?

I think they get ignored because they were already there when the Europeans started trying to carve colonies out of the place.

GreenLeader17 Apr 2018 7:39 a.m. PST

Likewise, the Empire building (and mass murder) of the Zulus and Matabele (for example) always seems to get a pass. I guess that's 'different' somehow, though the Venda and Mashona didn't seem to think so, and neither did the tribes of Bechuanaland, who begged the 'evil British' for a Protectorate.

Also interesting to note that the Portuguese Empire in SE Africa pre-dated the rise of both the Matabele and the Zulus.

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.