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Abstract

Rural residents, more so than their urban counterparts are popularly believed to view the use of social welfare programs as appropriate only as last (residual) means of obtaining help. The extent to which this belief reflected reality was assessed by Camasso and Moore (1985) a decade ago using data from a 1980 survey of Pennsylvania residents. Congruent with the residualist hypotheses they found that rural residents were less supportive than urban people of social welfare programming, even when the effects of various personal sociodemographic characteristics were controlled. This paper replicates the workof Camasso and Moore by reporting findings from a similar study carried out a decade later. Although the relative economic and social capital disadvantage of rural people has increased across time, they persist in being more likely than urban residents to express residualist views toward social welfare programming, Implications of these results are discussed.

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