PinkMonkey Online Study Guide-World History
10.3 Forms and Techniques of Imperialism
Several forms and techniques were adopted by modern
imperialism in order to establish itself.
1. Conquest and Annexation
In the early modern times, the Spaniards, the Frenchmen
and the British used to send soldiers to distant lands. They overpowered
the native chiefs, annexed the conquered lands and made them a colony.
Outright conquest and annexation proved to be expensive and burdensome.
2. Concession or Franchise
When a powerful, ambitious and aggressive agency,
acquired an exclusive right to exploit some economic resources,
in a "background" region, it was called a concession or
franchise. A group of German bankers and engineers got a concession
to build a long railroad, which later came to be known as the Bagdad
Railway in Turkey.
When the exclusive right to exploit some economic
resources was accompanied with the grant of lease of a stretch of
territory and the actual exercise of political control over it,
it was called a leasehold. The German Empire acquired such leasehold
of ninety-nine years over a part of the Shantung Peninsula in China.
4. Sphere of Influence and Sphere of Interest
When a state acquires an exclusive or even a preferential
right to exploit and develop a backward region economically, and
claims that other states have no right or claim to establish any
form of control over it, it was called the Sphere of influence.
Thus in 1907, Great Britain and Russia, divided Persia into three
(i) British (southern) sphere of influence
(ii) Russian (northern) sphere of influence,
(iii) Central or neutral sphere of influence.
In case the state only had the right to exploit
a backward region, but did not exercise political control over it,
it was called a Sphere of Interest.
This meant an indirect exercise of political control
by a powerful nation, over a weak and backward region through a
native puppet ruler, who remained only in nominal command. Thus
in 1912, France established a protectorate over Morocco.
6. Financial or Tariff Control
Economic imperialism could assume the form of financial
or tariff control. Thus, the powerful nation could take over the
complete charge of the finances of a weak and backward region, or
its tariff system. Before World War I, the Turkish finances was
actually run by the Ottoman Public Debt Administration, an organization
composed of mainly European officials.
The right of extra-territoriality was a privilege
whereby the Europeans were subjected the Western law and Western
courts of law, even if they committed crimes in non-European jurisdictions.
Thus if a Frenchman committed an offence in Constantinople,
he was tried by a French or a European official under French law,
and not by a Muslim court under the Mohammedan law.
8. The Mandate System
This was the last form of the new imperialism.
It emerged at the Paris Peace Conference, at the suggestion of General
Jan Smut of South Africa. Most of the former colonies and other
weak and backward regions were assigned to the League of Nations.
The League delegated its authority, subject to some restrictions,
to various states as its agents or "mandatories." The
mandatories had to submit to a League body called the íPermanent
Mandates Commissioní which were annual reports about the moral and
material progress in regions under their control.