Getting Connected: Colonialism

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Early Connections - The story of Tenochtitlan

  • A connection is how places and people are linked together, e.g. trade, transport and information links or political control
  • Tenochtitlan was the Aztech capital and the site of future Mexico City, when the Spanish first colonisde it in 1519
  • It had 300,000 residents, five times more than London
  • Within one genereation under the Spanish ruling, a negative spiral begn to take shape
  • The crops began to fail and food shortages occured
  • The natives lost their land to rich Spanish land owners, these natives lived in poor areas
  • The Spanish cleared forest to make way for farm and housing land
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Early Economic Connections

  • European countries became wealthy by trading with their colonies, which supplied raw materials, food and labour to their colonisers
  • The European nations became the leading manufactures of these goods recieved from the colonies
  • The colonies had considerable impacts;
  • By 1560, Spain had overthrown the powerful Aztec and Inca empires of Central and South America, gaining precious land and metals
  • In the Caribbean, profitable sugar cane plantations replaced subsistence food crops grown for local people. Britain and France controlled most of the Caribbean islands, using slaves from Africa to work the land 
  • In Latin America, 8 million slaves were brought to Brazil alone between 1550 and 1850. The impact of removing millions of young men and women was to impoverish (make a person or area poor) formerly wealthy and powerful African empires
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The Theory of Core and Periphery

  • It is used to explain the processw by which some countries become wealthy and others poor
  • Global core areas include; North America, Europe and Japan
  • They own 80% of global goods and services
  • Earns the highest incomes
  • Makes the most decisions about th global economy
  • Provides global investment
  • yet, the perphery is usally distant from core markets, they;
  • Consume 20% of global goods and services
  • erans the lowest incomes (2.5 billion live under $2 a day)
  • Makes the fewest decisions about global economy
  • Provides little global investment
  • Recent shifts in industry mean that manufactoring has fallen in core areas and has moved to periphery areas (the fall of primary and secondary jobs in core called deurbanisation) this is because it provides cheaper labour
  • Also, due to the new global connections, the periphery do have all the raw materials and manufactoring factories but these are owned mostly by TNC's (Transnational Companies) who are mostly based in the coremeanig the invesment and decision making remains in the core too
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Getting Disconnected - Guatemala's Story

  • Disconnected means that some countres become less influential and less involved in economic decision-making
  • The flow of wealth from colonisers into their colonies prevented them from developing beyond the colonisers, making them economically disconnected
  • Core nations depend on their investments in the periphery for increased wealth
  • The periphery nations depend on the core nations for their development and grew export goods like tobacco and cloth, instead of subsistence food crops - they depend on each other, this is known as the dependancy theory 
  • A few side effects of colonalism has been beneifical, such as India's extensive railway system, that the English built
  • But those with colonial ties have not gone far with their independence, today most African states are dependant on Europe for their trade
  • In the 1980's, 75% of Guatemala's cotton crop was exported. The money was used to buy pesticides, machines and equipment for next years crop
  • However, if Guatemala had processed the raw cotton into finished clothes, and then exported them instead, the country would have made far more profit
  • Only 1% of the land devoted to growing cotton would have been needed to produce the same income as just selling the raw cotton
  • With this they could have grown subsistence crops, but now cheaper suppliers have killed their trade and cotton is now exported into Guatemala for clothes making 
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Getting More Connected

  • The end of WW2 led to the spread of Communism is Eastern Europe, China and North Korea, the US attempted to tackle it with its Modernisation theory. This is the means by which the world would be more economically uniform, suing Western investment which aimed to reduce poverty
  • American overseas aid, invesment and loans were granted to those countries "at risk" from communism, this included Japan, South Korea, Mexico, the Philippeans, Tawian and Thailand, many of whom were ex-colonies and their economic development inproved rapidly 
  • India introduced the Green Revolution during the 1940's-1970's with high-yielding cereals and modern farming techniques. Although tying farmers into buying machinary, fertilisers and seeds from the US, it increased output and input incomes and helped prevent communist revolution 
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Population and the Global Labour Force

  • There was a rapid increase in population in developing countries, largely due to aid, this included;
  • A rapid decline in death rates and increased life expectancy
  • Vaccinations, improved water supplies and diets decreased infant mortailty 
  • Birth rates falling more slowly than death rates
  • Growing youhtful populations, which provided a large work force
  • Children being seen as economic assets (120 million chidlren are in the work force in developing countries)
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