Lauderbaugh, George M. Historical Dictionary of Ecuador.

AuthorRothera, Evan C.

Lauderbaugh, George M. Historical Dictionary of Ecuador. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2019.

Ecuador, George M. Lauderbaugh comments, "has been described by one author as a 'country of contrasts.' This is indeed an apt description of Ecuador's geography and peoples. It also partially explains the nation's traditional lack of political cohesion, which has plagued its quest for stability and development" (1). Lauderbaugh, currently emeritus professor of history at Jacksonville State University, has published several books on Ecuador. Furthermore, as he explains, he made his first visit to Ecuador in 1962, which sparked his fascination with and appreciation of Ecuador that has endured for nearly sixty years. Given his experiences and his publication record, Lauderbaugh was well qualified to write The Historical Dictionary of Ecuador, an excellent addition to Rowman and Historical Dictionaries of the Americas series.

The Historical Dictionary of Ecuador contains seven helpful elements that will prove valuable to scholars who have studied Ecuador as well as to nonspecialists (both scholars and members of the general public). First, a seven-page list of acronyms and abbreviations, which is useful for quick reference and for streamlining many of the entries. Second, three maps of Ecuador, although additional maps and images would have enhanced this volume. Third, a twenty-two-page chronology listing many of the important people, events, and movements from 1525 through 2018. Fourth, a twenty-four-page comprehensive introduction to Ecuador covering geography, population, economics, politics, religion, and history. Fifth, more than eight hundred entries about Ecuador (necessitating about 270 pages of text). Sixth, a list of the presidents, supreme chiefs, and juntas of Ecuador from 1830 to 2018. Seventh and final, a short bibliographic essay and a bibliography of works about Ecuador arranged by chronological period and topic.

The principal challenge when compiling a historical dictionary is to select an appropriate number of entries that provide coverage of the country's history and culture. However, since space is always at a premium, the editor must also be judicious about what is and is not included. As Lauderbaugh explains, "The most difficult task I encountered in compiling this dictionary was providing a balance of entries that would be helpful to a multitude of disciplines and interests. My main interest is political history, and given...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT