Essay Question About Poverty

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It was not allowed to sell its own resources to the highest bidder since all trade had to be done with the motherland.

In some cases, like the one above, a country’s entire livelihood was destroyed for the benefit of the colonizers.

(Wallace, )[ii]This was just one of many examples in which, to protect its own interests, the colonizers exploited the economy of the colonies.

The rigid system of mercantilism and colonization prevented the colony from operating in its own economic interests.

What is often neglected is the fact that the problems of these countries were created from economic forces such as colonization, and only worsened through globalization to now include increasing inequality, hunger, corruption, and loss of culture, exploitation, and environmental degradation as well.

Many centuries ago, the colonization of countries served only to benefit the colonial powers while exploiting the land, labour, economy, resources, culture and indigenous peoples of the colonies.Many European countries (namely Spain, Portugal and Britain) began to set up colonies in Africa, Asia, North/South America, India and Australia.To prevent conflict between colonizers over land disputes, the Treaty of Tordesillas was created.This is just one of the many impacts of colonization that can still be felt today.Colonialism in the past is what leads to the human rights, economic and environmental abuses still seen in third world countries today.While all of these factors do contribute to the pathetic state of third world countries, they are not the true roots of the problem.With the exception of the geographical conditions/climate (which can’t be helped), all of these reasons are effects of one single cause; that cause is colonization.India, a colony under Britain, had once been a major producer and exporter of cotton.The economy of India prospered under its cotton industry, even forcing Britain to put a duty on Indian cotton to protect its own textile industries.It is often overwhelming for people when they hear about all the problems that plague third world or “developing” countries today.People are aware about all the poverty, exploitation, environmental degradation, corruption and conflict that ravage these countries without knowing the reason WHY these problems exist.

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