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56

They did. Depending on the preferred definition of "colonies", Chinese states in fact established innumerable colonies throughout history. Certainly the most common form was overland colonies created in conquered "barbarian" territories. This processes lasts up till today; Beijing's sinicisation and settlement policies in Tibet and Xinjiang are viewed with ...


31

The Chinese situation was fundamentally different from the Western European colonial empires. In fact it's rather more like Russia, who also managed to keep her Eurasian empire, or the United States, who acquire vast territories West of the Mississippi. In the case of China, those lands you refer to are mostly Sinkiang and Tibet. Most notably there is the ...


18

This is, in fact, the big question of history. Subquestion 1 here: Why didn't Native North Americans (let's say the Mound Builders, for the sake of argument) conquer the world? The problem here, by the very logic you go over in your own question, is that the MB's were inhabiting a continent that was relatively biologically deprived. By comparison to ...


8

A recent report by USAID offers a brief but insightful view on some of current research on 'Youth Bulge' hypothesis. Some of the key take-away are: The common thread across the latest research is that youth bulges alone do not cause conflict. Rather, when unstable politics and social deterioration are combined with large numbers of disadvantaged young men, ...


7

I think there's a selection bias at play. A ruler that did not care about acquiring more land would typically end up avoiding conflict with the neighbors, and would tend to not be noticed historically. Just because the historically notable rulers were a certain way does not mean that the average rulers were the same way.


7

There are many factors: Economic motives: Many people saw colonies as markets for their finished products, and suppliers for their raw goods. Colonies provided raw materials that often could not be grown or found in the parent country. For example, England's colony in India. India was a good place to grow tea and opium, things that the British could not ...


7

These are both good answers but I think I can offer some extra points not included in them (after I have +1ed them both)! This is all cloaked in the wool of human history (there is always a counter example somewhere and a lot of this deals only in the general cases): The driver seems to be (as stated previously) the multiple states of almost equal power ...


6

Europe was pretty much a poor smelly underdeveloped backwater in global terms for most of history, although the culture and civilization of the middle east and Africa often reached across the Mediterranean and especially into the areas near the middle east. The change from poor backwater to rulers of the world started with the conquering of the Americas, ...


6

Good question; have little time now for more than a couple of thoughts: In the ancient world almost all states were, so to say, opportunistically expansionist. That is to say, almost no ruler or state ever passed an opportunity to take over the lands of a weak neighbour, either by direct force or by some form of intimidation. In that sense, Rome was not ...


6

Notice how big China is? There's a reason for that; it's only a semantic difference between calling conquered territory a "colony" and simply part of your country. EDIT: Someone pointed out in comments that the term "colonize" means something different from "expanding borders". So I should clarify what I mean: yes the terms are different, but it's just a ...


5

China did have colonies. All of the islands in Asia reachable by junk have been colonized by the Chinese at one time or another: Malaysia, the Phillipines, Taiwan, etc. The far ranging colonies of the European powers made in the 1500-1800 period cannot be compared because China did not have types of sea-faring vessels necessary. Another factor is that China ...


4

There may not have been a movement in Britain, but there were certainly individual left-wing anti-colonial intellectuals from the British colonies who wrote works in this vein. C. L. R. James from Trinidad was one, recognized even today for Black Jacobins, a history of the Haitian revolution published in 1938. This event (contemporary to the French ...


4

According to your linked Wikipedia article, that movement essentially started out as a Francophone version of the Harlem Renaissance. One important point here is that the Afro-British would not have nearly as much incentive to start their own movement, as the existing one already used their native language. In fact, a sizable amount of participants in the ...


3

Note: this is an opinion question (especially the second part) and probably off-topic here. I'll try to answer it nevertheless. I'm not sure there is a single rationale behind this. One reason is psychology. Humans build hierarchies instinctively and try to climb up. A country ruler is no exception, he will also instinctively try to amass more power and ...


3

The argument for the northern expansion doctrine, was that Japan had beaten Russia in 1905, and perhaps could do so again, whereas Japan never had a history of beating the United States. Also, Germany was attacking the Soviet Union (and not the U.S.), meaning that even if Japan lost a fight against the Soviet Union, it might weaken the Soviets enough to ...


3

Think about the global power balance at the time. Imperial Japan was a rising power that wants to expand against older, more entrenched alliances. Towards the south, it faced the maritime power of the United States which has a strong interest in keeping the Pacific and SE-Asia under her control. Towards the north, it faced the USSR. The Japanese leadership ...


3

Europeans conquered "almost the whole world" (as we know it today), because the technology in use at the time of their ascendency (steamships and artillery), made it physically possible for them to do so. The Mongolians conquered "almost the whole world" as THEY knew it (most of modern Asia), based on the physical limits of their "technology" (mounted ...


2

I totally and completely disagree with this premise. 1) The Sahara desert was almost completely uninhabited a couple thousand years ago, as the land was dry and arid, making it a poor agricultural location. 2) The dense rainforests made habitation in western and central africa extremely difficult until the arrival of the Bantu peoples, and they were groups ...


2

That was true in the "early days" (basically the days of the Roman Republic). At that time, "Rome," (basically central Italy), was beset by Greek outposts (of so-called Magna Graecia) in southern Italy (as far north as modern Naples, at one time), Tarentum, and the Italian "boot." Also Carthaginian outposts in Lilybaem (Sicily), Caralis (Sardinia). And ...


2

In the early 15th century, China had huge junks that dwarfed the ships of their European counterparts. China's Treasure Fleet sailed throughout the eastern Pacific and northern Indian oceans. By the latter part of the 15th century, China had turned inward. Building or working on a junk with more than two masts became a capital crime. Who knows what the ...


1

If you count areas occupied by China that has less than a majority of Han Chinese people, either today or at least when first claimed, then China has numerous colonies along its western borders; Sinkiang, Tibet, parts of Mongolia, etc. The reason why China is not considered "colonialist" in the usual sense of word is because historically, it has NOT had ...


1

The Europeans got no land but concessions from China, mostly in trade apart from signing over Hong Kong to the British which was about it. The europeans could not conduct a a land invasion into China proper, the defeats were mainly in naval engagements and even then the Qing managed to defeat the Portuguese, French and Dutch on several occasion so the idea ...


1

Supreme energy and intelligence. The best way to gauge a people's energy and intelligence is by looking at their intellectual achievements, not by testing what's-so-called IQ. One glimpse of art, science, literature text books will show who is extremely superior in terms of energy and intelligence. Why the Europeans acquired such supreme intelligence is ...


1

A (male) youth bulge sometimes occurs when the birth rate is FALLING. That's because most men prefer to marry women younger than them. So if the birth rate is falling, there are more older men of the earlier period than younger women of the later period. This happened with American cohorts born in the 1960s (and in certain other parts of the world). One ...



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