This week´s questions will discover you some other sides of colonialism.
Rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis)
Rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) is a tree originary from South America. When its important properties for industry were discovered, rubber became one of the most coveted raw materials in the 2nd half of the 19th century (rubber boom). Until 1885 rubber was only produced in South America and it was forbidden to export seeds or plants to other places, in order to preserve the monopoly and the big profits of its cultivation. How did rubber start being cultivated in other parts of the world?
King Leopold II of Belgium exploited the Congo Free State as a private property. The rubber plantations became something similar to hell for the indigenous workers. The subhuman conditions and the extreme abuses workers had to bear served as inspiration for a famous book written by a Polish writer in 1899. What was the title of this novel and who was its author?
The atrocities of rubber plantations in Congo were denounced on a report issued in 1904. The author of this report also denounced the abuses over the Putumayo Indians of Peru in 1906. Who was the author of these reports against one of the darkest faces of colonialism?
What was the Fashoda incident? How did it end?
South Africa became part of the United Kingdom colonial empire, but inside this territory there were two independent republics called Orange and Transvaal until the last decades of the 19th century. What was the origin of these republics and who were their inhabitants? How did these republics finally become part of the British Empire?
The origin of modern concentration camps is closely related to colonial conflicts. Colonizers created the structure of modern concentration camps to confine those who opposed their authority. They were used in two different colonial wars which took place at the end of the 19th century, one in the Caribbean Islands and another one in Africa. Where did modern concentration camps appear?