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 49 Karin Mamma Andersson Inside the moody, mysterious world of Sweden’s preeminent painter. Arts & Culture Issue 49 Jenny Odell The acclaimed author in search of lost time. Arts & Culture Issue 49 Amalie Smith The Danish arts writer finding clarity between the lines. Arts & Culture Issue 49 Ryan Heffington Meet the man bringing choreography, community and queer joy to the desert. Arts & Culture Issue 49 Nell Wulfhart Advice from a decision coach. Arts & Culture Fashion Issue 49 A World of Difference A fun lesson in cultural faux pas.