Prospecting for archaeological Tocharians

The Problem of Tocharian Origins: An Archaeological Perspective

J. P. Mallory
Sino-Platonic Papers 259 (November, 2015)

This study explores the problem of Tocharian origins in a series of stages, beginning with the archaeological identification of the historical Tocharians, the immediate antecedents of the historical Tocharians, the potential for identifying a source for the Tocharian languages outside the Tarim Basin, and, finally, how proposed external origins might accommodate some of the various models of Indo-European expansion.  … ⇒

White bone in Golok: A field report

My good friend Hannibal Taubes writes:

Incidentally, RE your black bone / white bone post, I asked my Tibetan teacher if she’d heard any such expression. She’s a 50-something Golok woman from a village at the foot of Mt. Amnye Machen. According to her, Tibetan rus means “bone” and also means “clan” (ch. 部落). (To be honest, I’m not sure what “clan” means here; there seem to be a number of different Tibetan words in use that mean something like that,  … ⇒

A residual Tungusic minority in North Korea

The two Koreas today easily rank among the most ethnolinguistically homogeneous countries in the world. Archaeological and early literary records on the one hand and recent migration and marriage trends in the ROK on the other (coupled with intensifying state and corporate support for multiculturalism) suggest that this was not a primeval constant of the peninsula, nor is it a simple given of its near future.

What may come as a bigger surprise is that the “foreign” population of the modern DPRK consists of more than businessmen and diplomats with a sprinkling of ill-fated abductees and showpiece defectors — there in fact exist persistent albeit tiny communities of “native aliens” with centuries of continuous non-Korean self-conception.  … ⇒