Merits of Colonialism:
Colonialism had many merits. At first, it aimed at enriching the mother country. The wealth that came from the colonies made the mother country prosperous.
Secondly, Colonialism contributed for the industrial growth of the mother country. Raw materials were brought to the mother country from her colonies. The factories ran quite well and produced more and more which were sent again to colonies for sail.
Thirdly, the surplus population of the country was sent to different colonies. This lessened the burden of the mother country and bade good, by to poverty.
Fourthly, the mother country sent many powerful and genius people to different colonies. They became the head of administration or army. They received their salary from the colonies. Thus, the mother country could very well govern her colonies.
Fifthly, Colonialism increased the prestige of the mother country. The more colonies a country possessed the more prestige it had before others. It also considered herself more powerful.
Sixthly, it also fostered unity among the people of the colony. By coming under the spell of mother country, the people of the colonies loved each other and were united. In due course of time, they fought against the mother country and became independent. The American War and Independence and India’s struggle for freedom were its glaring examples.
Seventhly, Colonialism also helped in the promotion of education, agriculture, administration, industry, trade and commerce. In due course of time, these colonies became self-sufficient.
Eighthly, Colonialism taught the people about ‘Nationalism’, ‘Democracy’ and ‘Constitutionalism’. In later times, these ideas helped the’ people of the colonies to achieve independence.
Lastly, this helped a lot to the Missionaries. They taught English to the people at different colonies. This educated people who knew many new ideas and spread them among the native people.
Demerits of Colonialism:
Colonialism had many demerits. At first, it exploited the people of the colonies. Then economic condition of the people of the colonies became precarious when raw-materials were taken away from their countries to the mother country.
Secondly, the mother country had to fight with the native rulers. Due to constant wars, peace in different colonies was lost.
Thirdly, Colonialism gave birth to an ugly tradition like slavery. The mother country sold many people of her colony at different places of the world. At Lisbon, there as a slave market. Slaves were sold there as chattels.
Fourthly, Colonialism created a wall between the ruler and the ruled. The ruler-race hated the colonial people and oppressed them. At last, the people of different colonies revolted against the foreign people and carried protracted struggle against them.
At last, it prompted the rulers to adopt the Policy of ‘Divide and Rule’ in Colony. The result of this policy was disastrous. This Colonialism created dissension between the Hindus and Muslims in India. At last it divided the country into India and Pakistan. Thus, Colonialism had many bad effects.
Infact, Colonialism was a creation of time. It first appeared in Europe and then spread into different parts of the world. With the progress of time, Colonialism disappeared from Asia and Africa. The colonies became free from the clutches of mother country.