Culture and Customs of Ecuador celebrates the extraordinary cultural, geographic, and ethnic diversity that has made this small country one of Latin America's most unique. Through this overview of its history, religious institutions, literature, social customs, cinema, media, and visual and performing arts, Ecuador emerges as a vibrant microcosm of Latin America. Students and other readers will learn how Ecuadorian society blends pre-Colombian, colonial, modern, and postmodern cultural forces. The underlying themes of Ecuador's continuous struggles with multiculturalism and national identity are presented with unprecedented clarity. Ecuador is a land of drama and paradox with abundant natural resources and a "boom and bust" economy that has prolonged dependence and instability. Despite many of the economic and social obstacles typical of developing nations, Ecuador has developed a dynamic culture. This multicultural society comes alive through engaging chapters on everything from history to performing arts. A chronology and glossary supplement the text.