Imperialism, Colonialism & Resistance Assignment| India & Britain Research Paper

Imperialism had a strong impact on both the colonized area and the colonizing country. Let’s take India and Britain. These two countries faced imperialism, but in different ways. In India, imperialism influenced the structure of political system and the government, which was Anglo-Indian. In other words, Indian political system was influenced by British rule. British imperialism was stronger than the imperialism in India because Britain traded with India from the late1600, took large parts of the country in 1757 and ruled till 1947, and brought Western culture and traditions to the colonized country. Britain has always been a colonizing country; therefore, it had more positive impacts of imperialism than India.

Positive and negative impacts of imperialism on India

Indian population used British knowledge and experience in all aspects of life, imitating the established cultural traditions, language, music and sport. For example, many people in India spoke English, played cricket and maintained the English tradition to have afternoon tea. In fact, British presence in India had positive impact on social, economic and cultural development of the local population. India felt western values and social dynamics in many aspects of life. As the primary interest of Britain was commercial, many Indian companies entered the global market. For example, the East India Company became very popular on the global market. Besides, the colonizers turned several large Indian cities into successful industrialized trading and cultural centers, including Calcutta, Mombay (now Bombay), and Chennai or Madras. The positive effects of industrialization and urbanization contributed to the development of Indian society. In urban areas of India, the traditional caste’s restrictions were disregarded. The policies developed by British Empire influenced the lives of women, providing then equal opportunities. The British colonizers built 40,000 miles of railroad in India, making travelling across India much easier.

The negative effects of imperialism on India include the decline of Indian traditions, lack of freedom in political and economic decisions, poor national development, and the use of natural resources by colonizers, etc. In 1877, the Queen was titled as the Empress of India, similar to the title used by the Mughals. Indian population was exploited by the British rulers. Many Indian people opposed British rule, but the British colonizers imposed strict laws to suppress this opposition. They excluded local people from the government, increased discrimination in other institutions.

Positive and negative impacts of imperialism on Britain

            The major positive impacts of imperialism on Britain include increased economic development of the country, the use of natural and human resources of India and other colonies. According to researchers, “the British derived the maximum possible advantage from their occupation of India”(Wanchoo 467). In 1850-1914, the British export was at its peak.

The negative impacts of imperialism on Britain include changing ideas regarding race, increased violence toward the colonized, complicated communication networks, increased exploitation of people, violation of human rights, limited opportunities of the colonized, which led to poor reputation of Britain at the global level.    In addition, British imperialism led to the wars, which requires military developments and had negative impacts on social and economic life of the colonizing country.

Comparison of African experience of colonization to India’s experience of colonization

African experience of colonization differed from India’s experience of colonization. According to historians, African colonies were exploited by the British in a different way. In other words, “the colonial systems of the British in India and Africa differed greatly” (Rieger 204). India supplied Britain and other European countries with raw materials and other natural resources, while African colonies provided slaves. In Africa, many people were converted to Christianity, while in India, the traditional religions were maintained. Besides, there were considerable differences in technological progress in these two colonized countries. India was more “technologically developed” and civilized than African colonies (Webster 88).

Comparison of the experience of African imperialism to imperialism in India

The experience of African imperialism differed from the imperialism in India. The attitudes of the colonizing nation to the colonies were different. African slaves were severely exploited by the British. They had no rights, lacked freedom of choice and were discriminated. They lost their traditional religion and had to accept new faith. Indian people were less discriminated. They had an opportunity to run their own business, but they paid taxes. Besides, there were considerable differences in economic, political and social outcomes of imperialism in Africa and India. Africa was less developed both economically and socially than India. In addition, there were differences in resistance to colonization in both locations. Indian population opposed the changes made by the British rulers (e.g. 1857 Indians Rebel).

Examples of how the effects of imperialism in India can still be felt today

There are some specific examples of how the effects of imperialism in India can still be felt today. Actually, the effects include the destruction of previous traditions, ways of life and values. Indian population embraced new ideas that shaped their identity. The positive effects include strengthening the institutions of power and increased role of education, reduced power of caste, enhanced international relations, “the spread of technological change,” etc. (Tomlinson 8).  The negative effect of imperialism in India that can be felt today is considerable gap between people of different social classes.

Thus, it is necessary to conclude that the impacts of imperialism and colonization are long-term impacts, which affect the lives of many generations of people. Imperialism in India and Africa changed the nations in different ways.



Works Cited

Rieger, Joerg. “Liberating God-Talk: Post-colonialism and the Challenge of the Margins ” in Postcolonial Theologies: Divinity and Empire, ed. by Catherine Keller. Chalice Press, 2004. Print.

Tomlinson, B. R. The Economy of Modern India, 1860-1970. Cambridge University Press, 1996. Print.

Wanchoo, Rohit. “British Imperialism in India,” in Science, Technology, Imperialism, and War, ed. by Jyoti Bhusan Das Gupta. Pearson Education India, 2007. Print.

Webster, Anthony. The Debate on the Rise of British Imperialism. Manchester University Press, 2006. Print.

The terms offer and acceptance. (2016, May 17). Retrieved from

[Accessed: August 11, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016.

[Accessed: August 11, 2022] (2016) The terms offer and acceptance [Online].
Available at:

[Accessed: August 11, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: August 11, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: August 11, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: August 11, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: August 11, 2022]
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