This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Boer War Essay

2485 words - 10 pages

When the British government finally delivered an ultimatum to Paul Krugers Transvaal government in 1899 the British cited Boer arms and the need for political control as their demands to avoid war. However in looking at war in South Africa it is impossible to ignore the fact that the Transvaal was home to the gold mines of the Witwatersrand that in the past few years had become the worlds primary gold field. J.A.Hobsons famous book of 1900 ?The War in South Africa: Its Causes and Effects? publicised what had become a common suspicion especially among South Africa?s Boers. Hobson, a liberal anti imperialist, who was interested in the connections between capitalism and imperialism broadcast the suggestion that the Boer war was a ?mine owners? war, fought ?in order to place a small international oligarchy of mine-owners and speculators in power at Pretoria? (J.A.Hobson in Smith,?95,p.394). Yet there were two poles of explanation for the Boer war and the flip side of Hobsons interpretation was also visible in the same year promoted by Amery?s imperialist political explanation, ?The Times History of the War in South Africa? also of 1900. In the most basic terms, discussion of the origins of the war has focused around economic or political factors. It is without doubt that capital and gold had at least a substantial role to play in the course of events in South Africa in the period but to what extent this was as part of a ?conspiracy?, however plausible, has now come into doubt.Perhaps firstly it is important to explain quite how dramatic the discovery of gold was in the Transvaal. In 1887 the Witwatersrand contributed only 1.2 tons of gold (0.8% of world production). Within five years this had increased to 30 tons (15% of world production) and by 1898 this output had again risen to 120 tons (over 25% of world production), (Ally,?94,p.13) . Gold mining was potentially a very profitable investment but requires large inputs of capital. This capital arrived quickly from South Africa?s English speaking capitalist investors such as Rhodes and the ?Randlords? who flooded into the rapidly expanding Johannesburg. These capitalists were able to raise the massive amounts of money that were needed to sink deep mines for gold. This was done through the creation of speculative mining companies on London?s stock exchange. Just to realise the scale of investment the two most powerful economic powers in the goldfields, Cecil Rhodes? Consolidated Gold Fields and Wernher, Beit & Eckstein commanded budgets larger than those of the state governments of Natal and the Orange Free State.These mine-magnates felt that the Afrikaner societies that had political control of the mine fields failed to ?fulfill the role of collaborating groups to the satisfaction of the gold mining community?(Atmore & Marks,?74,p.109). The fixed gold price and high costs of extraction meant that the mine owners were very concerned that the Transvaal state provide low cost labour. It was...

Find Another Essay On Boer War

Short 500 word desciption of the events in the boer war

631 words - 3 pages Untitled The Boer War of 1899 was a dirty little conflict that involved all the Boer Republics and the British Empire. It started a result of cultural resentment between the Boers (Dutch settlers) and immigrating British. It began as an uprising of British immigrants against the Boer government. The British Empire, seeing their subjects mistreated, decided to get involved. At first the war was fought with the honor typically associated

A newspaper-style article describing the end of the Boer war, ending in British victory

706 words - 3 pages May 1902--The pent up tensions between British in Afrikaner states and the Afrikaners themselves had finally broken. The British gold prospectors moving in on Boer land, and the Boer's mistreatment of the British became too much for both sides and in 1899, the Boer's declared war. A little history of the relationship between these settlers is due.The British claimed the Cape of Good Hope in 1806. Called the "Great Trek", the Afrikaners settled

In considering the process of colonisation and decolonisation by the British in Africa the periodc.1870 – c.1981, how far can the Boer war be seen as

762 words - 3 pages The second or great Boer war began on the 12th of October 1899. Two small states of 400,000 Dutch speaking people, the orange free state and the Transvaal republic, Had declare war on the British empire after they refused to remove their troops from their borders and to reroute reinforcements set to arrive by sea. Britain had thus far taken about 5 million square miles of African territories and the Boer war is often viewed as a turning point in

isu phase 3

651 words - 3 pages Canada’s contributions in the Boer War, World War One and World War Two are well documented. The Canadians helped in the Boer War from 1899-1902, World War One from 1914-1918 and World War Two from 1939-1945. Many Canadians were killed in these three wars. Just over more than 7000 Canadians were sent out overseas to help out in the Boer War (this included 12 women nurses).1 Approximately 65 000 soldiers died in World War One.2 (see Appendix 2

The Battle of Brakfontein

870 words - 4 pages INTRODUCTION The Battle of Brakfontein was a short brutal battle between joint Australian and British troops against a larger Boer force fought during the Boer War (1899-1902). The Battle of Brakfontein took place in the Brakfontein Drift on the Elands River on modern South Africa, from 4 August 1900 to 16 August 1900. The Boer’s objective was seize the mass supplies being transported along the Elands River, garrisoned by Australian troops. The

W. Laurier

573 words - 2 pages All prime ministers have different ways of treating people. Laurier for instead had made some changes at the turn of the century. Laurier tried to make Canada a prefect place to live, which would make all Canadians happy. His compromises were a good thing for the country. The French-English Relations, the Boer war and The Naval Issue were some of the example, which proved this.The Manitoba School Question was one of the first compromises that

British Imperialism

1546 words - 6 pages British Imperialism In many respects, the Boer War resembles the struggle toward globalization a century later that Friedman describes in The Lexus and the Olive Tree. The British, with their more advanced industry and technology, attempted to pull the Boer Republics away from the Olive tree and into the new global economy, golden straightjacket and all. The British Empire had much at stake in the conflict, and eventually achieved its

The Portrayal of War in the Poems, The Cry of South Africa and Drummer Hodge

778 words - 3 pages boarding house in 1920. The Cry of South Africa written in 1900 by Olive Schreiner was written during the South African War also known the Anglo-Boer War. She wrote the poem while living in South Africa suffering physically and psychologically, she tried to convince the South Africa government not to fight the war rather follow the path of piece, all her efforts only met with ridicule. She continually fought for the interest of the Boer and parade

Canada's struggle for autonomy in the 20th century

672 words - 3 pages picture because of other smaller achievements and advancements: Laurier: The Boer War was a British was fought in South Africa. It was purely an excuse for Britain to exert some military might and show the world that she was still the world's greatest military power. Britain asked Canada for a contribution to the war effort. The Prime Minister at the time, Sir Wilfred Laurier was an advocate for Canadian Nationalism and a French

The Effects of Imperialism

955 words - 4 pages the Boer War, Opium War, Spanish-American War, Filipino War, Hawaiian War, and Sepoy Mutiny. To elaborate, all of these wars were not fought world wide, but in small countries over land disputes or because of the colonies’ want for independence from the mother countries. The Opium War was the most immense war of the 19th century. It was fought between the British and the Chinese. The death toll was 19,000. The death toll for the Opium War

Australia's reputation and national identity

1756 words - 7 pages motherland England.One of the first large wars Australia went into was the Boer War. It went from 1899-1902. Southern Africa had been shared between British colonies and independent republics of Dutch-Afrikaner settlers, known as Boers. Throughout the nineteenth centaury the two powers had maintained a wary co-existence, although the question became wether Britain or the Boers should control Southern Africa. The two had already fought an inconclusive war

Similar Essays

Boer War Essay

965 words - 4 pages The Boer War was a conflict that lasted from 1899 to 1902 in southern Africa between Great Britain and their allies, Transvaal (South African Republic) and Orange Free State, in what is now South Africa. Throughout the 19th century, after Great Britain conquered the Cape of Good Hope in 1814 and expanded its territory in Southern Africa, there was tension between the British settlers and the Dutch-descended population which were called

The Boer War Essay

2238 words - 9 pages The Boer War The Boer War symbolizes the climax of imperial tensions and excitement of the late 19th century, and can be viewed as a turning point in the history of the Empire, precipitating widespread changes. The first of these is a change in the attitudes towards the ideology of empire; the second is a change in terms of future administration of the empire; and the third is a change in the role of Britain as a

The Origins Of The Boer War

1993 words - 8 pages The Origins of the Boer War I attest that the work herein is my own and I have followed Hunter’s antiplagiarism policy. signed,___________________________ In the late 19th century, the power of the British empire was at its peak. Spanning four continents and consisting of a quarter of the world’s population, it was, by far, the largest empire in the world. Its government was pushed to continually enlarge the empire’s

The Boer War And Its Effects On The South African People

1028 words - 4 pages Nations constantly get put through tests and challenges. They can be as small and unaffecting, or they can be enormous and have physical and emotional injuries on the nation’s citizens. However, no matter the size, problems have consequences. The Boer War, a trifling affair that spans over a course of twenty-two years, 1880-1902, also known as the Transvaal War and the South African War, has good and bad everlasting effects on the people of