Talk:Chronology of Western colonialism

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject History (Rated C-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject History, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of the subject of History on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
C-Class article C  This article has been rated as C-Class on the project's quality scale.
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.
WikiProject Sociology (Rated C-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Sociology, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Sociology on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
C-Class article C  This article has been rated as C-Class on the project's quality scale.
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.

Major Omissions[edit]

I can understand that this list is not meant to be all-inclusive for sake of size, but there are major omissions, especially the history of colonisation in the Pacific - Australia, New Zealand, the Mealanesian countries and their subsequent arbitrary divisions, Hawaii, etc. etc. Unfortunately, I couldn't contribute such dates without doing significant research. 00:07, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

This is as biased as colonialism[edit]

The first colonies in the entier history of the world where not made in 1481. There have been many empires that have had colonies . One footnote says that the west is not the only people to colonise "ONE!" . As i say on the colonialism talk page this representation of history boarders on Racism. This is highly POV where is the ottoman empire, ethiopian or aztec empires.Hypnosadist 14:59, 21 May 2006 (UTC)

Please refer to Colony and Colonisation for other examples of colonialism. This chronology and the main colonialism article relate to the European colonization which started in the 15th century. One Wikipedia page can't possibly include the Aztec Empire with the Ottomans and with the Scramble for Africa, this would have no sense at all. I am more than surprised at being accused of racism insofar as my contributions to this chronology, the colonialism article or the scramble for Africa can hardly be called racist! Refraining from hasty judgments might be a good idea. Cheers! Lapaz 20:31, 21 May 2006 (UTC)

Criteria for inclusion[edit]

I am tagging this compilation of POV/arbitrarily chosen events as TotallyDisputed. Just a few examples:

etc. It seems some WP editor decided to use this "article" in order to advance some political agenda. ←Humus sapiens ну? 23:44, 13 April 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, I deleted Oslo as well. --GHcool 00:56, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
I made an attempt to clean up this mess and added a few relevant events. I also added the ref I am basing on. I don't think that every armed conflict in the last couple hundred years and every publication on human races should be listed. Before adding new entries, please explain, based on reliable sources, why they should be here. Thanks. ←Humus sapiens ну? 11:05, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
Do you honestly believe that the publication of Fanon's The Wretched of the Earth is unrelated to colonialism? —Sesel 16:38, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
I believe this article mostly consists of original research, and should probably be deleted as inherently being original research. Jayjg (talk) 21:44, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
How can a timeline of facts be classified as OR? —Sesel 22:26, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
These "facts" have all been gathered into a group that is allegedly significant to the "Chronology of colonialism". According to whom are these, and not other events (or none at all) significant to that chronology? Something is original research if it "introduces an analysis or synthesis of established facts, ideas, opinions, or arguments in a way that builds a particular case favored by the editor, without attributing that analysis or synthesis to a reputable source." The source in this case appears to be User:Lapaz. Jayjg (talk) 00:45, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
How can a chronology, which only lists historical events in a chronological order, be POV and OR? You might dispute some points, but deleting so many things is not legitimate (although good things were added, I'm putting them back). Arthur de Gobineau, Gilberto Freyre, Frantz Fanon or Edward Said's books are major books concerning this theme, I don't know how can you contest that. Some very important historical events, which are in themselves unrelated to colonialism, are mentionned, as the history of colonialism is not unrelated to, say, World War II, which had some consequences on decolonisation. The end of the Cuban missile crisis and the beginning of the Detente is also an important marker concerning colonialism-related events. The question of Israel and the Arab states apparently is a major issue that you lift: let's debate that issue separately and not mix everything then. Personally, I don't think including Israel-related events and pan-Arabism stuff is POV, neither that it implies that Israel is a colonial state. But these events were a major part of Arab-states policies, and Nasser's was part of the Non-Aligned Movement. But let's not confuse the issues concerning books with the Arab-Israeli conflict (claiming that "some WP editor decided to use this "article" in order to advance some political agenda." is definitely not assuming good faith, and is a bit an over-sensitive reaction, if I may allow myself.) Lapaz 22:32, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
By that logic, every event in the last couple hundred years had something to do with colonialism. See WP:NOT#Wikipedia is not an indiscriminate collection of information. ←Humus sapiens ну? 23:28, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree with Jayjg. If somebody nominates this article for deletion, I'll be among the first to "vote it off." --GHcool 23:47, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
Looking at recent changes, there seems to be 3 different issues that you lift: 1/ the books 2/ the Israeli-Arab conflict 3/ major world history dates. I'll make one talk section for each to adress them separately, OK ? Lapaz 00:25, 16 April 2007 (UTC)


Why shouldn't Gilberto Freyre, for example, be included? His book was a major work on the colonial society in Brazil, wasn't it? Lapaz 00:25, 16 April 2007 (UTC)

I admit that I did not read that book. I think relevant books should be listed as references. ←Humus sapiens ну? 00:42, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Page numbers and quotations from those books would be ideal. Jayjg (talk) 00:57, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Why do you want page numbers and quotations? It's not like we need a cite to prove a statement here: this is a chronology. Lapaz 01:56, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Because you need to show that reliable sources have stated that these events are significant ones in the "Chronology of colonialism". Jayjg (talk) 00:47, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Oh, all right. But then mentionning "quotations from those books", as you requested, is not the way to proceed (as it would be difficult proving the influence of one book by quoting this same book). Perhaps you believe we should mention works which indicate that Gilberto Freyre's book was a ground-breaking work on sociology concerning colonial society in Brazil, or that Gobineau's work was one of the first, important theorization of racial theories, or that Fanon was a very important intellectual source of anti-colonialist movements? No problem, just put citation tags where you believe they are appropriate. Lapaz 12:50, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
If the publication of a book was an event in itself, we need a ref. showing its relevance & importance to the subject. If we use a book as a source, then per WP:CITE we'll need page numbers and quotations. ←Humus sapiens ну? 20:49, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

Israeli-Arab conflict[edit]

In my history classes, we used to treat this conflict next to Colonialism & decolonization. Certainly not to claim that Israel was a colonialist state, but because of the history of Palestine, which was under colonial rule. Second, the parts concerning pan-Arabism are not POV, nor are they meant to be "anti-Zionist" as you seem to think they are (don't read too much between the lines least you misinterpret intent - i.e. assume good faith, please :). They are just there because they are part of the various attempts at unification made in the formerly colonised world after World War II (just as pan-Africanism or pan-Americanism). This is only a chronology, there is no POV involved in it! Lapaz 00:25, 16 April 2007 (UTC)

To list AIC as a colonialist/anti-colonialist conflict is POV, no matter what the authors (I don't care who they are) tried to express. NPOV is non-negotiable. Please don't guess what I think. ←Humus sapiens ну? 00:49, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Please cite reliable sources that indicate that every single one of these often trivial events were significant in the "Chronology of colonialism". While you're at it, maybe you can explain why the Six-Day War entry was three times as long as any other, and included references to various quotations from UN resolutions. Also explain why there was no mention of the Chinese annexation of Tibet, all but the most recent Russian activities in Chechnya - indeed almost nothing about Russia's vast colonial empire, cobbled together into the "U.S.S.R", and the many events surrounding it? What about Morocco's occupation of its colony the Western Sahara? Perhaps your POV wasn't obvious to you, but it was crystal clear to others. Jayjg (talk) 00:56, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
The problem is not that. You assume that the Arab-Israeli stuff was included to claim Israel was a colonialist state. That is not the case; they were because of major importance in the region. Tibet and Chechnya are not "colonialist", unless you claim the US occupation of Iraq is "colonialist" (you could, but we're drifting away from the strict definition of European colonialism events). Lapaz 01:59, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
I accept that certain aspects of the Arab-Israeli conflict could reasonably be interpreted as part of the long, long, long history of colonialism. It used to have such event as the al-Aqsa intifada and the Oslo accords which had virtually nothing to do with colonialism, but I think the way that it stands now is pretty reasonable:
  • Sykes-Picot Agreement — most definately an important milestone in the history of colonialism.
  • 1916 Arab revolt — certainly a case of anti-colonialism
  • 1919 League of Nations mandates — most definately an important milestone in the history of colonialism.
  • 1936 Arab Revolt — a case of anti-colonialism, but a pretty minor one in the 500 year history of colonialism.
  • Israeli independence — deserves to be listed for the same reason that other mandates' independence are listed. --GHcool 05:12, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
I will agree, for the sake of consensus, to the removal of al-Aqsa intifada & further events (I found out that there was a Timeline of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict which could be put in "see also" for further information concerning the current events: it would allow a link for continuing reading of the history of the Middle East, while not assimilating the modern state of Israel to an "imperialist state"). Pre-WWII events are definitely related to colonialism. The problem is that it is difficult to cut a clear line between what would belong exclusively to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (which is not directly related to colonialism), and what directly belongs to the history of colonialism & decolonization (pan-Arabism). Pan-arabism, headed by Nasser & others, was both anti-imperialist and anti-Zionist: this explain the "confusion". Our personal opinions are not relevant there: nowhere does this chronology, by including the pan-Arabic attempts of Nasser, does it imply that Zionism is "colonialism", or, more precisely, that the current Israeli state is a colonial and imperialist state (which is not the case — if the Palestinians claim to fight a national liberation struggle, so did the Zionists who established the state of Israel — complex issues). I forgot: Western Sahara should surely be included, as it is on one hand one of the last territory mentioned in the UN list of Dependent territories, and in the other hand the conflict find some of its roots in the division between Spanish Morocco and French Morocco. Lapaz 14:22, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
I would object to a "see also" link to the "timeline of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict" article. The conflict is best viewed in terms of a myriad of economic and land disputes. --GHcool 16:20, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
True. But there is a Colonialist aspect to it, mentionned by quite a few scholars, which resides mainly in the origins of the Zionist movement (I know this will sound controversial, as sensitive people might think it is a criticism of Zionism, whereas it should simply be understood for what it is, a historical description of the Zionist movement). For instance, Haddad wrote thirty years ago: "European colonialism and ethnic nationalist movements of the 19th and 20th centuries no doubt stimulated feelings of nationalism among European Jews and led to the birth of organized Zionism. But Jewish nationalism - and its nemesis, anti-Semitism - existed long before the 19th century and the era of European colonialism." (The Biblical Bases of Zionist Colonialism, Journal of Palestine Studies). Lapaz 12:47, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Consider the source. Jayjg (talk) 22:57, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
I am not offended by Lapaz's analysis because I know he is acting in good faith. However, I think he/she is missing a key point about Zionism. The releven definitions to the term "colonialism," as defined by, are:
  1. the control or governing influence of a nation over a dependent country, territory, or people.
  2. the system or policy by which a nation maintains or advocates such control or influence.
Neither definition accurately describes early Zionism because the early Zionists had not come from a nation seeking to control a dependent country, territory, or people. Nationalist movements and colonialism are sometimes one and the same, but in the case of Zionism, it most certainly is comparing apples and oranges. The only colonialist powers in Palestine during the Arab-Israeli conflict were the Ottoman and British empires. There was no "Zionist empire" to exert "control or governing influence" over Palestine, and so colonialism is an inadequate and unaccurate way to view the early Zionists. The Zionists called themselves "pioneers" (halutzim in Hebrew) which is defined as "a person who is among those who first enter or settle a region, thus opening it for occupation and development by others." That seems much more accurate and honest. --GHcool 16:48, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
True. Nonetheless, despite the lack of a Zionist state which would back-up the settlers (since the aim of the settlers was precisely in the creation of a Zionist state), there are points which relate the settling period with other settling acts done in the context of colonialism. Although my POV is irrelevant, I do want to make clear that I do not criticize the nationalist will to create a state for the Jewish people, and that such criticism is certainly not the aim of underlying the proximities between Zionism and others colonialist events (where, in contrast, the states engaged in exploitation of the colonized territories, which included a fair amount of violence against the natives). But my POV is not in discussion here, is it? Lapaz 17:19, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
See also Ella Shohat's 1988 article, "Sephardim in Israel: Zionism From the Standpoint of Its Jewish Victims," in Social Text, of which he later made a book. Lapaz 17:29, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
I appreciate your attention to WP:NPOV and I agree with your own personal opinion on Zionism, but I must insist that calling Zionism a colonialist movement is a misreading of history and a misreading of the definition of colonialism. The only related idea between the two are the aspirations to govern a land that was not currently their own to govern. However, that does not equal colonialism. I know you understand this, Lapaz, but I am having trouble understanding how anyone who is sufficiently educated in the history of the Middle East and the definition of colonialism could conclude that Zionism is a colonialist movement? The facts simply do not support the claim. It is only politically motivated people or people who are ignorant about the facts that would have reason to claim that Zionism is a colonialist movement, and Wikipedia is not a tool for spin.
I think we're drifting off topic anyway (not that's it's not an uninteresting subject, but well). If most of you believe including parts of the Israeli-Arab conflict here accredits the false thesis that Israel is a "colonialist state", than I will not insist. I do, however, continue to question the relevancy of suppressing parts on pan-Arabism, as they are clearly movements related to the decolonization. Lapaz 03:36, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
I don't have a problem with including the two Arab revolts I listed above. Were there any other pan-Arabism topics are you referring to? --GHcool 06:01, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I think pan-Arabism stuff should be included, as well as pan-Africanism or pan-Americanism. Such attempts are a direct consequence of colonialism & decolonisation (the first condition of pan-movements being to be independent, and their aim being to provide a defense against neo-colonialism and overreaching frontiers allegedly created by the colonising powers). This would therefore include the foundation of the Arab League in 1945 and the foundation of the short-lived United Arab Republic. I also believe that the history of Palestine & Israel should span until the 1947 bipartition plan, and the proclamation of Israel (starting from there, I concede that including Israel-Arab wars is not directly related to colonialism). Lapaz 18:30, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
Personally, I don't think the Arab League or UAR are directly related to the history of colonialism, but I won't protest it if the consensus is to include them. --GHcool 19:36, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

Major world history dates[edit]

The purpose of this chronology is not to become a "world-history chronology", nor is it to claim that the Chartist movement in Britain had "something" to do with colonialism and should be listed. It is only to put the very few major events which can't be bypassed when looking at this time period: World War I & World War II definitively had many consequences on Colonialism. Will you argue against that? What about the Missile crisis? Do you claim that decolonisation was not linked, in any way, with the Cold War? Or rather, do you claim that Cold War matters did not interfere with that history? This is the rationale for inclusion of these events. Again, I don't think you can compare World War II with "just any events." Lapaz 00:25, 16 April 2007 (UTC)

Please review WP:OR. ←Humus sapiens ну? 00:51, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes? Lapaz 01:59, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
See WP:CONTEXT. One example: you removed both Gobineau's book, which had a main influence on racist theories which have legitimate colonialism (but this is for the section above) & you also removed the Franco-Prussian War, claiming it had nothing to do with colonialism. Strictly speaking, you are correct. However, apart of being a major event of European history, leading to the isolation of France by Bismarck and paving the way for German imperialism, this war had the result of creating a "revanchist" sentiment in France, which explains the reluctance of many French politicians towards colonialism at that time. Thus, it is important to list this war, as a marker of world history which had influence on both German and French colonialism. If we proceed in counter-factual history, it would have been perhaps possible that, without that war, French colonialism would have been stronger and more popular. While what actually happened was that until WWI, the French colonial empire was not popular in France, and French colonialism was mainly the result of private initiatives, supported by a growing "colonial lobby" opposed by those who seeked revenge against the German empire. Lapaz 14:27, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Other example: you claim it is POV to include the October Revolution but neither the February Revolution nor the 1905 Revolution. But the October Revolution has been, like it or not, a main inspiration for anti-imperialist movement, just as the Comintern has supported anti-imperialist movements. The Communist Parties, Stalinist or others, did support anti-colonialism. We just have to accept this fact, it is not a matter of being pro-Communist or anti-Communist (the Cold War is finished, by the way). It is an important event in the history of Colonialism, just as Wilson's 18 Points are also an important event in the history of colonialism. Both the US and the Soviet Union have supported, in some extent, anti-imperialism against the imperialist powers of Europe. Of course, there is much to be said to this support to anti-imperialist movements, both from the Soviet Union & the US. But that overreach the scope of a simple chronology. Lapaz 14:34, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Others problems: the foundation of the United Nations is, perhaps, not important in the history of colonialism? And the 1961 Paris massacre is, of course, some really uninteresting event, without any relation whatsoever to colonialism? Lapaz 14:43, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
The above is a good example of OR. By this logic, any major event in the last 1-2 hundred years may qualify. I think we should demand that every entry's relevance should be supported by RS (see WP:CITE), or simply put this OR list for deletion. ←Humus sapiens ну? 20:51, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Please put "citation tags" after the dates you feel request such citations. Lapaz 12:41, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
All of them, please. Jayjg (talk) 22:57, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Aren't you stretching things a bit too far? The Bandung Conference hardly needs a reference... Neither does the Algerian War or any other colonial war, nor does the Herero Genocide. Lapaz 03:37, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
If you think that some entries are too obvious to be in the list, then it should be very easy to find a reliable source referencing their relevance to the subject. ←Humus sapiens ну? 20:43, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
No, I'm not stretching things too far. I personally think this List is pure original research, and cannot help but be so. I'm just itching to list it on AfD, but I'm holding off so you can source it. Jayjg (talk) 22:29, 18 April 2007 (UTC)