Land grab

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Land grabbing is any taking of land regardless of ownership, consent or toleration.

In the context of historiography , land acquisition means the settlement of a territory by a people or ethnic group , sometimes as the end point of a previous territorially unsteady way of life. The term is viewed critically today because it has a strong ideological background in certain contexts. A distinction must be made between colonization and colonialism , which proceed from a mother country and represent extensions of the area of ​​influence.


Well-known examples of historical landings are:

The corresponding historical epoch of the respective people is also referred to as their conquest time . The concept of land grabbing includes any settlement in foreign areas, be they deserted, domesticated or already settled, be they forcibly conquered or taken by peaceful immigration. If the population is already resident, there may be mixing or displacement.

Modern concepts in the sense of a land grab

From the middle of the 17th century, the Diggers in England practiced land grabbing motivated by social reform . In North America, individual land grabbing by squatters had far-reaching significance for the colonization of the American West. Later legalization was gradually achieved through state laws and, in 1862, with the nationwide Homestead Act .

The State of Israel is a special case from recent history. The basis is the Balfour Declaration of 1917, in which Great Britain pledged its support for the establishment of a Jewish national home in Palestine. The land grab should be done peacefully without displacing the local population.

See also


  • Karl S. Bader , Gerhard Dilcher : German legal history. Country and city - citizens and farmers in ancient Europe . Springer, Berlin a. a. 1999, ISBN 978-3-642-63677-6 , 1st part legal history of the rural settlement chap. B Land grabbing and rural settlement , p. 17–62 (legal and socio-historical description of the conquests in Germany from the early days to the Middle Ages).

Web links

Wiktionary: Landnahme  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Brockhaus Encyclopedia. FA Brockhaus, Vol. 13, Mannheim 1990, p. 43.
  2. See article Landnahme . In: Reallexikon der Germanischen Altertumskunde Vol. 17, pp. 602–611.