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date: 20 March 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Many indigenous peoples now practice their own laws, their own cultural traditions and customs. In doing so, they draw on history, reconstructing their legal pasts, recreating—or even creating—their identities. At the same time, historical research has increasingly pointed out the intense interaction between indigenous peoples and European invaders during colonial period. Thus, it has become clear that many of the so-called ‘indigenous’ or ‘colonial’ legal traditions are more properly seen as hybridizations of indigenous and colonial laws and legal practices. This chapter introduces this historiography and its relevance to law and presents some methodological challenges in writing the history of indigenous rights in Latin America resulting from this fairly recent shift in (legal) historiography.

Keywords: legal history, indigenous peoples, indigenous law, Latin America, legal historiography

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