This chapter discusses the protection of cultural heritage in Central and South America. The key defining features of Central and South American regional efforts in the field of heritage are the use of heritage as a tool for development and the connection between heritage and indigeneity. With respect to development, the main approach is policy-driven, explained both by the nature of the objective (economic) and by the fact that most organizations engaging in this area have reduced mandates for rule-making with respect to heritage. With indigeneity, rule-making is stronger, engaging a proud tradition of international lawmaking in the region, which started as part of a Pan-American reliance on the rules of international law to shield Central and South American nations from European colonialism and US neo-colonialism. In the specific area of heritage, there is certainly a conversation between the regional and the global that needs to be accounted for.
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