Population involves the counting of a group in a place. To count is to know. To know is to intervene. Knowing and intervening are complicated practices. Assigning groups to places is complicated as well. This set of essays, that examine how scientists make Latin American groups into “objects of inquiry and intervention” (Suárez-Díaz 2017a [this volume]) allows for a fundamental examination of how practicing population can involve seemingly disparate accounts of the relationship of groups to places. North American scientists tend to constitute the populations described in these papers as biologically essential groups located in timeless landscapes or as malleably cultural groups within national territories, while Latin American scientists tend to constitute populations through the examination of groups formed in relation to land.

Debating the nature or culture of groups of people is a relatively...

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