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POLI 227 Lecture Notes - Monroe Doctrine, Indirect Rule, Anti-Imperialism

Political Science
Course Code
POLI 227
Rex Brynen

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Jan 21st
There was a massive wave of decolonization after World War II in the 1960s because of
ideological concerns of the colonizers, but more because the growing number of anti-colonial
uprisings made colonialism too expensive to continue
Decolonization in the Americas
- In Latin America, a hierarchy was established in colonization, so political power passed
to the local elite
- Spanish and Portugese administrative control was always fairly weak, as the white elites
gained more power and resources, they pushed for greater independence
- Decolonization was hastened by the American and French revolutions, Napoleonic wars,
US (Monroe Doctrine) and British policy
Asian decolonization
- Partition of Pakistan and India was very violent, but other cases were relatively peaceful
African decolonization
- Unlike the Americas, where Europeanized populations led the struggle for
independence, here nationalist movements were provoked by changes in local society
hastened by colonialism
Anti-colonialism in rural areas
Traditional, excluded: Local elites who found their power/social influence marginalized by
Traditional, coopted: coopted elites supporting anti-colonial movements because they started
to realize the power they had and began to think “why do I need the foreign leaders now that
I’ve got all this power?”
It was also the new elites who rose to power as a result of colonial changes who began to
question colonial rule and want greater political power who lead the movements
So, it was both those who had power taken away by colonialism and those who gained it who
opposed colonialism
Peasants also revolted, which is considered strange as peasants don’t typically have a sense of
solidarity with one another and don’t have much spare time or resources
- Peasant revolts occured when colonialiasm threatened rural survival (colonial taxation,
forced labour systems), therefore they only mobilized when their very livelihoods were
- Peasant revolts were often very quiet, and took the form of foot dragging, misreporting
incomes, and various acts of civil disobedience
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