This paper draws on extended fieldwork in San Diego County to show that suburban residents exhibit a particular set of rights-claims that they make specifically around their residence in their suburban community. These claims are largely made legitimate by homeownership and are based around maintenance of a perceived ideal lifestyle. In addition, I discuss the duties that suburban citizens feel bound to uphold. Residents of the community feel it is their duty to respect the perceived rights of others to maintain a safe, clean, and healthy community. A major focus of this suburban citizenship is an attempt to keep perceived threats away from the community. I illustrate that a suburban form of citizenship springs from a tension and uneasy synthesis between two competing conceptions of citizenship—one based on individual rights-claims and the other based on community membership and involvement.

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