Golok (mgo log) is a distinct ethno-cultural region by virtue of its dialects, origin narratives, tribal and clan groupings, explicit identity statements, and life-style and ecology. The dialects spoken in the Golok region are a variation of nomadic Amdo dialects ('brog skad), distinct from the farming areas to the north and east, but grading into the Ngawa (rnga ba) dialect to the southeast, and running up against the Kham dialects (khams skad) of Yushu to the southwest. In contemporary China, there is a Golok Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture based on this perceived unity. The areas around Golok are more difficult in terms of classification. Pastoralist communities extend from Golok southeast through Ngawa (rnga ba), Mewa (rme ba) and Dzögé (mdzod dge), which have traditionally been referred to as Shimdrok (also pronounced Zhingdrok, zhing 'brog). They are quite similar to Golok, and thus their most natural classification is not immediately apparent.
Feature Type Cultural Region