In practice, colonialism in India, Southeast Asia, and Africa exhibited many similarities but also some differences. Some of these variations can be traced to political or social differences among the colonial powers. The French, for example, often tried to impose a centralized administrative system on their colonies that mirrored the system in use in France, while the British sometimes attempted to transform local aristocrats into the equivalent of the landed gentry at home in Britain. Other differences stemmed from conditions in the colonies and the colo- nizers’ aspirations for them. For instance, Western economic interests were far more limited in Africa than elsewhere, and African colonies were therefore treated somewhat differently than those in India or Southeast Asia.