Are You Sanskari Or Unsanskari?

With modernization taking over and the socioeconomic divide growing, we find that there are two types of youth. We have the youth that are considered ‘sanskari’ or traditional and well cultured and the others who shun the ‘sanskari’ title and are flexible enough to live a more daring life of being ‘unsanskari’. However, does this mean that those who choose to adopt a modern approach to life are uncultured? Let us look at the traits that society considers to be sanskari and unsanskari.


  1. Wears conservative clothing according to societal or religious standards.
  2. Does not consume alcohol.
  3. Does not attend wild parties.
  4. Listens to their elders.
  5. Does not talk back to elders.
  6. Avoids using offensive language while speaking.
  7. Is very hospitable towards family members.
  8. Avoids keeping secrets from parents.
  9. Does not stay out for long hours, especially after dark (mostly true in the case of women).
  10. Believes in some form of organized religion and diligently follows it.

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  1. Adopts a brazen choice of fashion and clothes which elder members of society would find offensive or unconventional.
  2. Is liberal in their choice of consumption of alcohol and open to experimentation.
  3. Loves night life and parties.
  4. Challenges societies norms and elder’s perspectives.
  5. Is bold in voicing their opinion.
  6. Stands up for themselves when someone offends them.
  7. May choose not to engage with certain members of their family as they may be seen as ‘uncultured’ by elder members.
  8. Lives a double life: one away from family and one with their family.
  9. Does not always adhere to curfew.
  10. Often chooses their own system of beliefs.

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The problem with labeling youth as either ‘sanskari’ or ‘unsanskari’ is that often, these conventional traits are often used to label women and these labels may often misrepresent an individual. For instance, ask yourself whether all the traits in each category check off. Most probably the answer is… no. This is because we all may have a few sanskari traits while challenging societal norms. This does not mean that one is completely cultured or completely uncultured. Which category do you think society will categorize you?

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