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Penurbia describes country districts close to metropolitan areas in the United States.

Penurban districts look like rural areas. They are, however, heavily influenced through emigration by metropolitan settlers.

Settlers to penurbia are attracted by rural ambience. Many incomers, though, carry metropolitan ideas with them in their journeys from built up urban areas, even as they build a new-country self-conception. Consequently, penurbanites construct a unique mindset which blends an appreciation of country values with reliance on metropolitan incomes.


  • Encyclopedia of Urban History, Edited by Professor David Goldfield and published by Sage, published December 2006
  • A Geography of the Heart: Penurbia in America, by Joseph Goddard, University of Copenhagen. (2006 doctoral dissertation)

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