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The Different Drum

3.85 of 5 stars 3.85  ·  rating details  ·  743 ratings  ·  38 reviews

For a World in Conflict...
New Hope for Wholeness in the Modern Age!

A society of rugged individualists and economic competitors A world of nuclear politics and uncontrollable forces For many, modern living means loneliness, disaffection, apathy and isolation.
Is there an escape?

In a startling, life-affirming work by one of America's foremost thinkers, Dr. M. Scott Peck
Audio, 0 pages
Published September 1st 1987 by Simon & Schuster Audio (first published 1987)
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Melissa McClintock
I read this in my early twenties after the Road less travelled. It impacted my identity, because I wasn't in the "mainstream" and I was the black sheep of my family and as most 2o somethings checking things out. I thought "aha, I"m not the only one!" It was encouraging.
Wonderful. Dr Peck is the man! This one really helps you get perspective on how the sense of community and overall mores have eroded since the age of industrialism and ultimately prosperity
Scott Peck is very creative at writing memorable opening sentences in his books. "A Road Less Traveled" begins: "Life is difficult." The Different Drum begins: "Community is rare." He purposely does not define community, but devotes the majority of the book describing its characteristics and how to acquire it. His ideas are idealistic, and leave the reader to conclude that community is not only rare, but, based on his principles, impossible. His ideas of religion are thought-provoking, and he in ...more
It was raining. I remember standing around smoking with Scottie under a porch at Emory. He was a great chain smoker, tall and thin, lovely sense of humor, and quite warm. Must have been circa 1984-85. I enjoyed his workshop - all on the topic of this book. Funny though, now, many years later, I don't remember much about the book. His first two, Road and People of the Lie (have never tired of telling the story of the boys and the Christmas gun), made a much deeper impression. Come to think of i ...more
Brilliant on community , white anted by Jesus glasses

Really really good ideas on the importance of community plus solid suggestions how to do same. Skip the religious blather and focus on human beings and thus is a stunningly excellent book
Christie Bogle
Jan 14, 2008 Christie Bogle rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Non-profit employees, teachers
I directly quote from this book in the process of writing my first year of research designing an ESL class in a community center. I refer to it again in my MA "file paper" (the only thing they offered that approached a thesis at the time.)

I found it one of the most useful pieces of writing for defining and giving me a lexicon for community building and classroom communities.
Mindy Danylak
excellent book about that oft-overused word, "community". the section on stages of spiritual development should be mandatory reading for anyone who does anything related to faith or spiritual life. the last few chapters felt like a different book though. i know he'd say they're all related but they didn't hang together well for me.
Peck's book spoke fairly close to my own beliefs on community and how the principles of community should be applied to the world at large. The language was a tad hard for me to follow emotionally as it leans heavily on the sensibility of eighties-era psychology, and I think that he goes a bit off the mark when talking about victims of trauma needing to simply 'let go' (regardless of the lasting, often lifetime effects of PTSD and trauma that sometimes must be dealt with in a more holistic way). ...more
What an Idealistic way to look at the world.. I would elect this man to run our country. Educational and philispohical
This book changed the way I relate to people, especially in groups.
Marta Mellinger
model i've used for years and years about life...

The Different Drum engaged my thoughts consistently and to significant depth. I couldn’t read without evaluating the various communities of which I’ve been a part, whether we were close to his ideals or far from them.

After extensive empirical studies, Peck is able to break down community building into four general steps:

1) pseudo-community, in which people think being nice and avoiding conflict is what determines community

2) chaos, during which people express various dissatisfactions and confl
The Different Drum is about building authentic community. M. Scott Peck describes what community has meant for him in his life and why it can be transformational in our lives as well. He then discusses his journey in discovering community and learning how to create it, explains how we can create authentic community, and shows how the weaknesses of human nature and lack of true community in the world have led to some of the world’s most pressing problems (and, hopefully, how a push for authentic ...more
As others have commented this book is very idealistic. To be honest the things Peck talks about for building community I learned in marriage counseling. His only context is the American culture and his data that he gets about community building are only from short-term groups. He never mentions family as a community and he seems to get a fix out of forming short-term community groups. I remember he used the word 'bored' and 'boring' a lot when the groups weren't moving through the stages he desc ...more
Amos Smith
I am surprised that Peck's other books have so many reviews and this one has so few in comparison. This is another excellent book by Peck. There are some authors that resonate so deeply with me that I try to read most of their work. Peck is one of those authors. In this book he offers some extraordinary insights about community.
-Amos Smith (author of Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity's Mystic Roots)
I won't be writing a review for this book beyond what follows.

M Scott Peck presents an interesting if seemingly ideal perspective on the power of community. Dawing first from his experience with working in groups to develop a sense of community, he then explores ways of doing so. In the third part he applies his suggestions to both religious organizations and political ones. I found my skepticism rising powerfully when reading the chapter on political application and because this is pretty much
Hoss Layne
His insights concerning community building and maintenance are extensive. When he starts discussing politics and his particular theology is where the book falls short.
Non-fiction: social concerns.
This book came highly recommended by my brother. I checked it out at the library, but never got around to reading. Then, while I was visiting a favorite rock shop in Eugene, OR during Christmas break, I found a used copy for four dollars. I've been reading it slowly . . . I've yet to see if it will have the same effect on me that it had on him.


I've read bits and pieces on and off, but I never quite got into it. Maybe it's not the right time for this book. I'll let it wait until another day.
April 'Huston' Schmidt
Excellent book on the psychological aspects of making and sustaining community. Many of the cultural examples are outdated (references to the arms race, in particular), but otherwise a helpful balance of theoretical perspective and practical suggestion.
Sep 03, 2007 Alexis rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Shelves: decisionmaking
This book is a good one, not Road Less Traveled, but it is essential in its own way of making one see the importance and what it takes to truly be in cooperation with others. It really gives community a whole new sense of the word.
Jaime Wright
Peck's arguments in the first two sections of the book make it impossible for the reader to ignore the call to action in the third section. He compels his reader to believe that world-wide community and peace is possible.
The first time I read it I really enjoyed the book. Since then I have tried to re-read it several times and have not made it past page 100. The only real difference I can find is my state of mind.
If you like M Scott Peck you'll like this. There is some good material in here, but I feel the basic ideas could have been conveyed effectively in a few pages, rather than needing a whole book.
Mother Teresa, when she won the Nobel Peace Prize, was asked "How can we have world peace?" She answered, "Go home and love your families." This book expounds on that concept.
I didn't finish reading this book. I think I simply lost interest. I did enjoy Peck writing on the importance of community.
Jon Dengler
This book was an amazing look at community building as a strategy for peacemaking. I highly recommend this book for everyone!
I read this a long time ago but remember finding it really interestin as I have with most of Scott Peck's books.
Steve Tretiakow
discussion of the dynamics of community making and the multiple components necessary for it to manifest itself
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Dr. Peck was born on May 22, 1936 in New York City, the younger of two sons to David Warner Peck, a prominent lawyer and jurist, and his wife Elizabeth Saville. He married Lily Ho in 1959, and they had three children.

Dr. Peck received his B.A. degree magna cum laude from Harvard College in 1958, and his M.D. degree from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in 1963. From 1963 unti
More about M. Scott Peck...

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“The overall purpose of human communication is - or should be - reconciliation. It should ultimately serve to lower or remove the walls of misunderstanding which unduly separate us human beings, one from another.” 52 likes
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