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  A concept used in comparisons of urbanization rates and levels in the contemporary Third World with those in the First World (the \'advanced industrial countries\') at similar levels of development. In the 1950s and 1960s it was argued that many Third World cities had too many residents relative to their industrial base, which led to proposals for the return of recent inmigrants, especially the residents of squatter settlements, to the countryside. Later analyses claimed that it was invalid to compare nineteenth-century European urbanization, based on labour-intensive factory industries, with the current Third World situation, in which outmigration from the countryside is needed to promote an efficient agricultural sector and cities absorb new residents not into capital-intensive manufacturing industries but rather into labour-intensive service industries (Sovani, 1964). Crucial to such analyses is not the size of the city but whether it is parasitic on its hinterland or stimulates growth there (Hoselitz, 1955). (RJJ)

References Hoselitz, B.F. 1955: Generative and parasitic cities. Economic Development and Cultural Change 3). Sovani, N.V. 1964: The analysis of overurbanization. Economic Development and Cultural Change 12: 113-22.



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Other Terms : imaginative geographies | resistance | structural adjustment
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