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Grant number like: FT-58506-11

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Benjamin Reiss
Emory University (Atlanta, GA 30322-1018)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2011 – 7/31/2011

Understanding Sleep in the Modern World: An Interdisciplinary History

"Modern Sleep" investigates the place of sleep in the modern world and the incursions of modernity into the realm of sleep. Architects of modern thought from Descartes to Freud to neuroscientists have attempted to explain and rationalize sleep's disruptions of the waking world and its challenges to notions of stable personal identity. At the same time, the forces of modernity--from science to business--have rationalized, commercialized, and managed sleep. "Modern Sleep" turns to literary history as a record of subjective and even sacred reclamation of experience that is objectified by science, medicine, commerce, and moral pedagogy. The resulting book will analyze the feedback loops between the biological imperative to sleep, the cultural rules governing sleep, and the intellectual frameworks for understanding this under-examined aspect of human experience.