Essay on Colonization of the Caribbean

  • Category: South America, World,
  • Pages: 4
  • Words: 874
  • Published: 15 April 2021
  • Copied: 151


Colonialism alludes to the act of taking control over a nation's political affairs and abusing it financially. Those in control are called colonists, while the innate individuals make up the colonies. Derek Walcott’s Sonnet “Ruins of a Great House” is centered on the history of colonization and its debasement of power. In this Sonnet, Walcott reveals his indecisiveness towards Britain, as he elaborates on the 18th and 19th centuries when Britain's subjugation was tremendously profitable to the European society. Walcott reveals his sense of aversion by the mistreatment from the British towards native African people. Still yet, He reveals that he understands his writing is largely impacted by the English language.

Despite the broad conclusion that the method of colonization had a negative impact on the native African people, the colonized domains obtained numerous benefits from this conquest. This includes the advancement of the locale, the enhancement of framework and the advancement of technology. According to this truth, colonization of Africa cannot be seen as completely negative as it created the expansion of colonialism that impacts the world today. Henceforth, the colonization of Africa resulted in benefits for both sides, in spite of the fact it is fundamental to understand both the positive and negative results. Walcott reveals the impacts of servitude and British colonization within the Caribbean, persistently alluding to Britain as the “empire”. Walcott reflects on the devastation of the Caribbean culture with utilizing symbolism, metaphors, Allusion, and Metonymy to depict his anger. 

The British colonialists profited from colonialism, but that was expected. Be that as it may, the colonies learned a few particular practices from the Europeans. For example, the rise of education and literacy levels within the colonies of Africa that brought a sense of patriotism many years later. On Lines 32 - 36, Walcott recounts the past brutalities that appear to be the social problem of today's society. He gives three illustrations of English pilgrims that took part in the enslavement and brutality of African Americans, “ I thought next of men like Hawkins, Walter Raleigh, Drake, Ancestral murderers and poets, more perplexed in memory now by every ulcerous crime.” Walcott gives an Allusion to the truth behind the English dialect and the once known respectable writers who employ the English language as they once were evil people.

With the rise of literature brought alongside this was the spread of awareness to the arrival of order and classism. Ironically, Walcott also uses the English language that he deems as evil to indicate many symbolisms in the text, for occasion, within the final Stanza he says “All in compassion ends so differently from what the heart arranged, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s.” He understands that the English language has many ways of being expressed that those previous writers had an evil intent and he has a pure intent. Another thing that was very beneficial from colonization is the start of Medicine and Health.With the intrusion of Western individuals came the Western way of life and wellbeing care. Sanitation moved forward and the newborn child death rates went down.Together with drugs, the Europeans brought modern innovations with them that included weapons and tools.

Finally, the last beneficial impact colonialism has was the gathering of people towards the religion of Christianity. The European countries benefited from colonialism, but that at the risk of another nation's expense. Be that may, the colonies as well learned many things as it became the made nations.  

Contrary to the fact that Europeans brought numerous benefits to Africa, the British settlers caused much hurt to the inhabitants of this landmass. In the sonnet, Walcott illustrates to the audience a sense of passing, hopelessness and pulverization in the first stanza when he states “disjecta membra” that translates to a scattered fragment in latin. He uses the metaphor of the “Great House” to speak about the ruins of Africa and to depict the disturbed state the British colonizers left behind. The allegorical utilization that is depicted when unveiling the destroyed “Great House” as the previous Emperor supports the narrative of being destructive. Furthermore, he draws imagery in line three stating “remain to file the lizard’s dragonish claws,” that outlines two conflicts in the sonnet, nature versus environment and the manifestation of evil creatures who benefit from destructive ruins.

One of the major negative impacts of Colonialism was servitude. Right from India to Africa, individuals were being subjugated and taken to the mother nation. They were being constrained and many slaves contracted diseases from the British Colonizers; one of the diseases was lyme disease and leprosy but the lime also alluded to the fact that lime could be a metonym for the British Domain. Walcott states in line 9 and 10, “A smell of dead limes quickens in the nose, the leprosy of empire,” lime could be a depiction of the slaves bought from one land to another for the benefit of the British Economy, just as lime assisted the colonizers with scurvy. Yet, these slaves are dying from Leprosy brought by the British Empire.  

To conclude, it is self-evident that colonialism was terrible but it was a basic stage for the advancement of a part of districts. In the final lines of Walcott’s Sonnett it reveals a sense of forgiveness as he acknowledges that every man influences another and recognizes that human nature has both good and bad within its history. Although those who enslaved the African and other nations brought to them the benefit of books, education, health and technology they also infringed a lot of generational trauma that must be released in order to move forward. As every history is made up of mastery and control.