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Related to colonialism: Postcolonialism, Neo colonialism


the policy and practice of a power in extending control over weaker peoples or areas
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


the political rule, either directly or indirectly, of one society, country or nation over another.

Colonialism, however, involves more than just political rule. In the 20th century it has been particularly associated with one ETHNIC GROUP dominating another within the dominated group's territory Thus, in this century, colonialism has been associated with European, white, Christian, wealthy rulers who have attempted to impose cultural values over the ruled by either devaluing or attempting to eradicate the colonized groups’ religions, languages, customary laws and economic activities. Colonialism has therefore been seen by many sociologists as closely associated with the development of RACISM. Also in this century colonization has been associated with the dominance of the colony's economy by the colonizer, and it is this that is one of the key differences which Marxist writers see as distinguishing 20th-century colonization from earlier forms. See IMPERIALISM, NEO-COLONIALISM.

Various forms of colonial rule have existed in history, but one important distinction is between direct and indirect rule. In this century, the British in Africa often relied on indirect rule, nominating indigenous people or institutions as representatives of the British crown, whilst the French imposed direct rule from Paris through French officials. See also ORIENTALISM, POST-COLONIAL THEORY.

Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the political, economic, and ideological subjugation of countries that are, as a rule, poorly developed socially and economically, by the ruling classes of exploiter states. This concept is usually applied to the age of monopoly capitalism, when a territorial partition of the world has been completed and the colonial system of imperialism has taken shape. The term “colonialism” is also used to mean “colonial system.”

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
One indication of the inattention to colonialism is the low level of lack of engagement with Howard Adams, Prison of Grass: Canada from a Native Point of View, 2nd ed.
For Ngugi, it was the whole system of imperialism, capitalism and colonialism that brought about the current situation.
(1987:94) It is clear that there is a misconception of colonialism that shows partiality and arbitrariness totally grounded in Eurocentrism.
British imperialism gave birth to colonialism. In fact, the communist priests had described colonialism as the last stage or phase of imperialism.
The project of Colonialism informs us that the weak nations remained in the clutches of the strong nations at various times.
Here, the DA's current leader, Mmusi Maimane, felt obliged to step in and call his former party leader to attention: "Let's make this clear," Maimane tweeted, "colonialism, like apartheid, was a system of oppression and subjugation.
This explains why some Arabs prefer the return of colonialism in the Arab region - a state of nostalgia and longing to those days when Arabs were united.
In addition, with respect to impact, the book states that the Japanese colonialism was more brutal and intense in comparison to the British, but this argument is not substantially analysed in the essays except for incorporating Gandhi's critique of colonialism in detail.
While modernity often frames racialization against claims of universal principles of virtue and public good, colonialism brought with it sharp racial differences which are inevitably built into modern notions of representation, sovereignty, rule of law, and of citizenship (Mahmud, 1998).
Critique: Impressively well researched, written, organized and presented, "Black Africa's Largest Islamic Kingdom Before Colonialism: Royal Ribats Of Kano And Sokoto" is an exceptionally informed and informative work of seminal and meticulous scholarship making it unreservedly recommended as an invaluable and seminal contribution to college and university library Islamic History collections and supplemental studies reading lists.
The story of the aqueduct is modern Canadian colonialism in microcosm.
Settler Colonialism: A Useful Category of Historical Analysis?