We are sleeping less than ever. In 2018, researchers from Ball State University looked at data from over 150,000 adults between 2010 and 2018 and found that the prevalence of “inadequate” sleep—defined as seven hours or less—had risen from 30.9% to 35.6%. Since the industrial revolution, the typical working day has been divided into three equal parts: work, free time and sleep. As we have become more connected, our lives more fast-paced, sleep is the sacrificial third. Could this be the beginning of the end, not just for the eight-hour workday, but for sleep as the great unifier? For years, armed forces have experimented with drugging their soldiers to keep them awake—from British soldiers mainlining tea in World War I to Americans in Vietnam consuming so-called “pep pills, ” generally the amphetamine Dexedrine. More recently, a drug called modafinil has been experimented with by armies in India, China, South Korea, France, the UK and the US. This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 19 Going Incognito We all secretly wonder what mischief we’d make if invisible: When our identity is hidden, everything seems possible. Arts & Culture Issue 19 The Best Policy Sometimes we talk to each other without feeling heard. Honesty—a most intimate interaction—can be just as thrilling as its more devious inverse. Arts & Culture Issue 19 A Sense of Suspense With unhinged imaginations and mountains of cliff-hangers, the filmmakers behind the sci-fi podcast Limetown have all the makings of a scary story. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Like Clockwork In this new column about time, we learn how slipping off our watches makes us feel like deadline-damning renegades. Arts & Culture Music Issue 19 On a Grander Scale Malaysian singer-songwriter Yuna now may live on the opposite side of the globe, but she’s determined to evolve while staying true to her roots. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Neighborhood: Fire Stations The firefighting profession has evolved over time from Ancient Rome’s rudimentary bucket brigades to today’s sleek life-saving departments.