Colonialism and racism

Colonialism in the 17th and 18th centuries

Daniel Defoe’s novel Robinson Crusoe is written in the time when colonialism was at its peak. The Italian explorer Christopher Columbus arrived in the “New World” in 1492 after a voyage of about four weeks in the service of the Spanish kings. He named the island of the Bahamas he set foot on “San Salvadore”. Over the next few decades, exploration and colonization of the newly discovered continent began. European sailors undertook numerous voyages of discovery and conquest there and began to establish themselves with settlements and bases. Colonies sprang up everywhere, initially as trading posts, not only in America, but also on the African and Asian coasts.

The term colonialism refers to the capture and exploitation of one country by another. From the 15th century, the Spanish colonized Central America and the west coast of South America, while the Portuguese were mainly in Brazil. The dominant position of the two Iberian countries was broken by England, France, and the Netherlands during the 17th and 18th centuries. Britain, despite the loss of its North American possessions in 1776, became the largest and most powerful colonial power in the world with it...

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