Interviewee Profile

Name: Kyizom
(Alias: No)

Gender: Female

Interview Age: 74

Date of Birth: 1936

Birthplace: Tsang Nyero, Utsang, Tibet

Year Left Tibet: 1959

Profession: Dairy Farming, Farming

Monk/Nun: No

Political Prisoner: No

Interview Details

Interview No.: 66M

Date: 2010-04-05

Language: Tibetan

Location: Doeguling Settlement, Mundgod, Karnataka, India

Categories: Oppression and Imprisonment

Keywords: childhood memories, Chinese -- first appearance of, Chinese -- oppression under, Chinese rule -- life under, escape experiences, farm life, forced labor, herding, imprisonment, thamzing/struggle sessions, Utsang


Kyizom hailed from the village of Tsang Samtenling near Gyangtse. Her family farmed as well as engaged in raising animals. During summertime they lived in a huge tent made from the hair of yak and grazed their animals in the grasslands. They returned home in time for the harvest each year. As a child, Kyizom along with her large dog, helped herd the yaks and sheep.

Kyizom recalls that when the Chinese first appeared in her village, the children were terrified and distrusted them. The Chinese wearing blue or yellow uniforms lured the villagers with gifts, but gradually changed their attitude and then started oppressing the Tibetan people. Kyizom and her family were forced to move to the ground floor of her house and Chinese officials occupied the second floor. The Chinese distributed all her family's animals to village beggars.

Kyizom witnessed the thamzing 'struggle session' of her father and aunt, who was the umze 'chant leader' of the local nunnery. Kyizom vividly describes the horrible way they were humiliated in front of the whole village. Both her father and aunt were subjected to thamzing two more times and then imprisoned where they eventually died, most likely from starvation. Kyizom feared for her safety and fled to India through Bhutan with many others from her village. The normal 2-day journey took 15 days in order to hide from the Chinese.

Interview Team:

  • Rebecca Novick (Interviewer)
  • Ronny Novick (Videographer)
  • Namgyal Tsering (Interpreter)
Interview Video

Link: Watch On Youtube

Topic: Interview with Kyizom on 4/5/2010

Length: 01:40:14

Short Videos

Link: Watch On Youtube

Topic: Escaping from Tibet to India

Length: 00:01:37

Link: Watch On Youtube

Topic: Public Humiliation of Tibetan Villagers

Length: 00:01:13

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