From this paper it is clear that colonialism is a practice of domination, which involves the subjugation of one people to another” (Kohn, 2006). This fairly standard definition makes it difficult to distinguish colonialism from the modern day practice of imperialism, which has many of the same features and effects as its earlier predecessor. In the years between Roman expansion and the present day, these ideas haven’t changed much. “The British appropriation of ‘colony’ retains inflections of the Roman empire while propounding ardently on Britain’s unique involvement in imperialism. Hence ‘colonialism’ attains an historical specificity, noting particularly the impact it had and continues to have on all societies across the world.
For purposes of this discussion, colonialism is characterized by the placing of European settlers on foreign territories with the intention to control the area and profit from its possibilities. Modern definitions of colonialism tend to give it a negative connotation because of the results we’ve seen of such practices as the centuries rolled by. Countries most affected by colonialism included North America, Australia, New Zealand, Algeria and Brazil. In all of these countries, the indigenous people suffered extreme inequalities and subjugated status as the colonists exploited the natural resources that rightfully belonged to the natives and were ruled by often distant foreign entities that imposed their rule by force whenever necessary.
Writers of the colonial periods in every European country involved in the practice continued to point out the negative effects colonialism was having on the native populations. As settlers from Europe began arriving, the quality of life of the natives steadily declined.