Nagaland Lies in the hills and mountains of the northeastern part of the country. It is bounded by Arunachal Pradesh to the northeast, Manipur to the south, and Assam to the west and northwest and Myanmar (Burma) to the east.
The Nagas, an Indo-Asiatic people, form more than 20 tribes, as well as numerous subtribes, and each one has a specific geographic distribution. Though they share many cultural traits, the tribes have maintained a high degree of isolation and lack cohesion as a single people. The Konyaks are among the largest tribe, followed by the Aos, Tangkhuls, Semas, and Angamis. Other tribes include the Lothas, Sangtams, Phoms, Changs, Khiemnungams, Yimchungres, Zeliangs, Chakhesangs (Chokri), and Rengmas.
The Naga tribes lack a common language; there are about 60 spoken dialects, all belonging to the Sino-Tibetan language family. In some areas dialects vary even from village to village. Intertribal conversation generally is carried on through broken Assamese, and many Nagas speak Hindi and English. English is the official language of the state.
Tribal organization varies from the autocratic angs (chiefs) of the Konyaks and hereditary chieftainships of the Semas and Changs to the democratic structures of the Angamis, Aos, Lothas, and Rengmas. A prominent village institution is the morung (a communal house or dormitory for young unmarried men), where skulls and other trophies of war formerly were hung. The pillars are still carved with striking representations of tigers, hornbills, and human and other figures. Women hold a relatively high and honourable position in Naga society. They work in the fields on equal terms with men and have considerable influence in the tribal councils. A central feature of Naga life is the Feast of Merit, a series of ceremonies culminating with the sacrifice of a mithan (a domesticated guar). Each tribe has its gennas, or festivals, and Naga dance, music, song, and folklore all express an exuberant concern for life.