Review by Choice Review
This beautifully presented six-volume encyclopedia expands on the 1996 edition, edited by Barbara A. Tenenbaum et al., continuing the earlier work's tradition of providing the best scholarship on Latin American history and culture. Large portions of the articles have been replaced, revised, and updated. A unique feature is the number of biographies: 3,300 biographical entries of significant authors, musicians, and cultural figures. Time periods range from the prehistoric to contemporary Latin America. The broad geographic scope includes not only Latin America but also Spanish Brazil, the Portuguese Empire, and non-Spanish-speaking Caribbean countries. Debuting in this edition are eight "Mega Essays" written by specialists on themes such as "Democracy and Race." Other unique features include maps for all Latin American countries, national statistics, and extensive chronology. Readers may notice a distinct focus on the political, social, and economic history of Latin America. In comparison, The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Latin America and the Caribbean, ed. by S. Collier, T. E. Skidmore, and H. Blakemore (2nd ed., 1992), may offer more archaeological details. Nevertheless, this set is truly indispensable for researchers studying the history and culture of Latin America. Summing Up: Essential. Lower-level undergraduates and above; general readers. L. A. Ganster University at Buffalo Libraries
Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Booklist Review
Reference Books Bulletin praised the first edition of Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture (1996) as the only up-to-date comprehensive encyclopedia of Latin America. As the new edition's senior editor, Langer (Georgetown University), notes, Latin American scholarship has exploded since the last edition. The number of articles has increased to 5,824. Of these, 568 entries are new (including 366 new biographies), and 155 were replaced. Some 403 entries were substantially revised, and another 537 were partially revised. New to this edition are 8 mega-essays on broad topics such as Race and Ethnicity and Hispanics in the United States. Most of the 600 illustrations are new, and each volume now contains a section of color plates. Also new are a chronology, a thematic outline of articles, and maps. New articles include Acquired immune deficiency syndrome; Buena Vista Social Club; Internet; Mara Salvatrucha, La; and Sexuality. Rewritten articles include the excellent Cannibalism, which reviews current controversies. Many articles were revised with the addition of several sentences or a paragraph at most. For example, Art: Pre-Columbian art of Mesoamerica adds only a reference to Aztec and Mixtec tlacuilos, or codex scribes. As the numbers show, the great majority of entries received no changes to their text, although more than 4,000 bibliographies were updated with an Additional Bibliography list. Inclusion of classic sources is a strength of both editions, but some are now available in newer editions. For example, the bibliography of Art: Pre-Columbian art of Mesoamerica cites the first edition of Mary Ellen Miller's Art of Mesoamerica (1986) although it is now in its fourth (2006) edition. One-quarter of the contributors are new, with many from Mexico, Argentina, and Brazil. However, many are listed as being affiliated with their 1996 institutions, and the contributors list does not indicate which are deceased. Despite the lack of extensive revision, this set remains the only comprehensive encyclopedia of Latin America. As such, it is a solid purchase for large public and academic libraries without the first edition and for collections where the first edition was heavily used.--Whittington, Christine Copyright 2008 Booklist
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Library Journal Review
First published in 1996 (see the review in LJ 7/96), this reference set covers the Western Hemisphere from Mexico to the tip of South America. The second edition presents more than 500 new essays among the almost 6000 entries. The new "mega essays" cover many broad topics (e.g., Hispanics in the United States; economic development). In addition, many entries have been updated or substantially revised. The extensive biographical entries provide hard-to-find information on many lesser-known Latin American authors and other cultural and historical figures. Many articles contain cross-references and include bibliographic sources in English, Spanish, and Portuguese; a thematic outline and a table of biographies by profession also provide helpful access. Color photographs, maps, charts, and other illustrations enhance the text. BOTTOM LINE While a few English-language encyclopedias covering this region have been published since the 1970s, this work is certainly the most comprehensive and useful on this vital part of the world and includes distinctive entries not found in a random search of other reference sources. An outstanding encyclopedia that will serve a wide range of users from high school students to Latin American scholars, this is highly recommended for public and academic libraries. [Ebk. ISBN 978-0-6843-1590-4; ebook pricing depends on account type and population served; more information is available online at www.gale.cengage.com.]--Donald Altschiller, Boston Univ. Libs. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.