This chapter focuses on the production of a particular model of governing indigeneity as a figure of otherness as it took shape in French Guiana. It examines the emergence of a new form of public policy to respond to indigenous demands, including a limited recognition of their specificity, and explores the important role of ethnologists in this process. The colonial history of the Amazonian territory of Guiana was shaped by its centuries-long status as a French colony including several years as penal labor colony as in many colonial territories, conversion to “civilization” was the foundation of the hierarchy within Guianese colonial society and also determined the boundaries between subjects and citizens. The specific nature of Amazonian terrain— thick jungle— and the limited influence of colonization in Guiana allowed Amerindian and Maroon peoples to take refuge in areas where the French state had little control.