The Mind After Midnight: Where Do You Go When You Go to Sleep?

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The Mind after Midnight: Where Do You Go When You Go to Sleep?

Full Program: 2011 World Science Festival | 01:25:42

Featuring Sleep Clinician, Author Carlos H. Schenck, Neuroscientist, Dream Researcher Matthew Wilson, and Neurophysiologist, Sleep Scientist Niels Rattenborg with Science Writer Carl Zimmer Moderating

Full 90 Minute Program: We spend a third of our lives asleep. Every organism on Earth—from rats to dolphins to fruit flies to microorganisms—relies on sleep for its survival, yet science is still wrestling with a fundamental question: Why does sleep exist? During Shakespeare and Cervantes' time, sleep was likened to death, with body and mind falling into a deep stillness before resurrecting each new day. In reality, sleep is a flurry of action. Trillions of neurons light up. The endocrine system kicks into overdrive. The bloodstream is flooded with a potent cocktail of critically vital hormones. Such vibrant activity begs the question: Where do we go when we go to sleep? Based on new sleep research, there are tantalizing signposts. We delved into the one-eyed, half-brained sleep of some animals; eavesdropped on dreams to understand their cognitive significance; and investigated extreme and bizarre sleeping behaviors like “sleep sex” and “sleep violence.” More from this series: Mind after Midnight




Carl Zimmer

Science Writer
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Carlos H. Schenck

Sleep Clinician, Author
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Matthew Wilson

Neuroscientist, Dream Researcher
Full Bio >


Niels Rattenborg

Neurophysiologist, Sleep Scientist
Full Bio >

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