Impact Of Art And Medicine On The Production Of Race In The British Empire

Art And Medicine In The British Empire Free Essay


British Empire refers to a global network of dependencies that include protectorates, colonies, and other territories— that were put under the jurisdiction of Great Britain’s monarchy and under the rule of the British government over about three centuries. The strategy of granting or accepting substantial degrees of self-government by unions, which was preferred by the empire’s long-lasting existence, led to the development of the concept of a “British Empire” in the 20th century, containing self-governing unions that regarded British supremacy as largely symbolic. The concept was included in the 1931 legislation. Today, in a free association of sovereign states, the Commonwealth includes traditional components of the British Empire.


Art and Medicine largely impacted the living vessels in the British Empire as their numerous conquests of several nations saw the British Empire return home with the art and medicine related subjects. Most individuals use art as a method of dealing with their environment, religious or political views, and social relationships. This is especially true about imperial regimes. Invariably, participants of the dominant group utilize art as a means of explaining and defending their dominance, voicing the mysticism of kings, and demonstrating their understanding and mastery of the physical world. Those who are trapped in institutions often go through stages of adjusting their art to match that of their political masters, revisiting the manifestations of their art, most times as a deliberate act of resistance, and eventually expressing a new public consciousness in their art.

The British Empire’s art history reflects all these innovations. The British decorative arts were undeniably inspired by imperial rule: the knowledge of war and political and economic influence, and the inclusion of the whole world and its inhabitants in a new global environment contributed to a strikingly creative movement in artistic practice, taste, and responsiveness. Throughout British North America, South Africa, and Australia, Europeans who founded themselves as permanent migrants embarked on a quest for distinctive artistic expression suitable to their sense of national pride.

Civilization may have influenced British art but it has destroyed the artistic existence of the British occupied societies. The British had no respect or curiosity in any aspect that seemed to differ greatly from other European customs or their own for most of the nineteenth century. Therefore, indigenous artists couldn’t anticipate much of their current rulers’ assistance or motivation. What they created could at best be gathered and presented as an anthropological tool rather than for any artistic value. But, whatever Europeans think of this one, indigenous art persisted as a kind of time bomb that is to explode in the 20th century. As it was named in the early days, ‘ethnic’ art started to draw serious attention and affect the practice of European artists. Around the same period, artists in Africa, Asia, and the Pacific, as well as drawing according to their artistic practices, were increasingly interested in European styles and techniques which allowed them to impact their art. Therefore, the once static division between western and ‘ethnic’ art began to crumble within the context of imperialism. This method, though, took an unreasonable amount of time and had to take in each of the colonies a sequence of distinctive paths. A collection of sites now follows that explore artists’ perspectives and directions all over the empire.

There was a reason why West Africa was named a white man’s grave. British merchants and officials’ average lifespan could be measured in a matter of months after being sent to these tropical regions. Without the natural defences that local people have created through centuries, a whole host of crippling and even fatal diseases will rapidly strike Europeans down. The government will recreate similar but different circumstances-from in the Caribbean to the Indian subcontinent. Every colony has its own unseen set of bacteria and viruses that could assault the naive colonist of Europe. The rule was that the more humid and colder the colony, the greater the risk it posed because the microbes appreciated the more pleasant conditions of reproduction. It was no surprise that the vast majority of British refugees were bound for South Africa, South Australia, New Zealand, and Mexico’s cooler temperate territories. However, even the often alien symbiote of these colonies could test the first colonists’ medical understanding and knowledge. It is also important to remember how nobody was aware of the existence of disease-bearing microbes until the middle of the 19th century and the recognition of modern medicine.

It might also show that perhaps the modern communication and transportation links that allowed colonists to travel all over the world as their empire expanded proved to be favourable and unfavourable at the same time. Europeans could not only travel around the world, but they could bring new and lethal illnesses with them when they were returning. The most destructive illustration of this would be the way Cholera was imported back to Britain with devastating results from the Indian sub-continent. A fresh risk of importing diseases for people without resistance to them was caused by the colonial practice of exporting slaves and peasants all over the world to modern farms and factories around the Empire. Once more, the movement of diseases is not limited to those that threatened human beings — animal and plant diseases were displaced just as readily as the colonists exploited and played with nature to improve their economic prospects.


When the role of germs in disease spread was finally understood, there were quick and rapid medical breakthroughs. Also, the most significant developments were in preventive medicine: vaccines and prophylactics. Cures for existing patients were more difficult to produce, and between the two inventions, there was a significant lag in time because some illnesses don’t have a treatment developed for them yet. The British Empire was lucky that the study, manufacture and commercial manufacturing of these drugs, prophylactics, and vaccinations had a strong scientific, agricultural, and technical base. At first, these projects would be conducted by well-meaning charitable groups and missionaries. Although these would not always be as successful as providing little logistical ability to ensure that the entire population was served in a short time. It was only when it was necessary to convince the full weight of the regulatory authority to participate in such projects that they began to have significant effects. It was only in the 20th century that the full weight of modern medicine and institutional implementation will make meaningful breakthroughs to restrict the hosting and spread of disease.

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