Among the world’s earliest colonial powers, Great Britain established its imperialism across several continents in the 1800s. Imperialism is the policy of aggressively extending one nation’s power to gain economic and political control over the acquired territory. People believe that social Darwinism and racism contributed to the beginning of imperialistic powers by inspiring people about the survival of the fittest. Additionally, technologies in communication and transportation greatly favored the controlling process. Imperialism reinforces a colony’s economic situation while shattering its culture like what Great Britain had done to Burma.
The industrial revolution transformed Great Britain’s innovative military technology which propelled its emergence as the world’s greatest power. In the nineteenth century, Great Britain gained control over Burma as a result of three wars. Under British rule, the Burmese economy flourished and it became the richest country in Southeast Asia. Because Burma’s prosperity was linked with British control, almost all of the wealth went into the pocket of British government. The scarce benefits to the native population arouse discontent, rage, and rebellion in the heart of Burmese which were soon carried out into riots against Great Britain. Eventually, Burma gained independence from Britain in 1948.
When the colonial process was in full swing, English writer Rudyard Kipling expressed his favorable feelings toward imperialism in “The White Man’s Burden”, while a younger English writer by the name of George Orwell expressed a different opinion in “Shooting an Elephant” and “A Hanging”. Kipling wrote his poem twenty-five years before George Orwell’s short stories, the poem encouraged and instructed the United States in becoming a world power through imperialism. On the other hand, Orwell wrote about his miserable experience as an English police officer in Burma during the 1920