Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep

by David K. Randall

By Nathan Seppa, 11:48 AM November 1, 2012

In 1994, an earthquake knocked out electricity in Los Angeles, delivering previously unknown darkness to many residents. Some were alarmed by a silvery light in the black sky. Until then, apparently, the only Milky Way they had ever seen was a candy bar. But perhaps they got some good shut-eye that night.

It wasn’t always this way, Randall writes. People evolved to sleep long hours in a world that got very dark and stayed that way, every night. But modern conditions and lifestyles have left ma...

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