The Social Organization of Local Areas

Avery M. Guest, Barrett A. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


Consistent with previous theorizing, two forms of social organization exist at the local level in metropolitan Seattle: the “urban village,” which rests on a foundation of close primary relationships, and the “community of limited liability,” which is composed of less intimate social relations. l he thirst torm of organization most often appears in areas of low residential and functional mobility, while the second type is concentrated in higher-status and childbearing areas. Other dimensions of lifestyle and behavior are also found to vary between the two types of locality. In general, those areas that approximate the urban village model engender relatively strong emotional feelings of attachment, while the limited liability areas are more frequently perceived as “nice” places in which to live.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)217-240
Number of pages24
JournalUrban Affairs Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1983

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Urban Studies


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