IDEAS THAT MATTER Salon Series - Sleep Matters

Friday, March 22 at 3:00pm to 5:00pm

This is a past event.

USC Village, McCarthy MPR 1501

No RSVP required | All are welcome | Free Snacks

Join Dr. Patience Moll for a conversation with special guest Drew Ackerman, host of the Sleep With Me podcast.

If sleep matters, why are 1 in 3 Americans currently sleep deprived? Philosophers traditionally have denigrated sleep as a mere interruption of our waking moments, when the mind is clear, rational, and productive. Modernist thinkers like Freud, on the other hand, considered sleep and the dreams it produces as revelatory of our unconscious drives. In spite of developments in neuroscience, however, scientists still do not understand how the mind “falls” asleep, and medical sleep aids remain notoriously ineffective. The popularity of Sleep With Me: The Podcast That Puts You To Sleep suggests an essential link between sleep and storytelling, even for adults. In this salon we’ll discuss why and how sleep matters with Drew Ackerman, the creator and host of the Sleep With Me podcast. We’ll consider how the mystery of sleep and of falling asleep can help us to appreciate the “twilight” state of mind that exists in between consciousness and the unconscious, light and dark, day and night, work and rest, intention and inspiration, anxiety and comfort, fiction and nonfiction, and so on. We’ll ask how appreciation of this twilight state can help us to negotiate the demands of a 24/7-culture made possible by capitalism, psychotropic drugs, and digital technology.

To learn more about the Sleep With Me podcast, check out this New Yorker feature from 2016: The Podcast That Tells Ingeniously Boring Bedtime Stories to Help You Fall Asleep.

Sponsored by the Thematic Option Honors Program & the McCarthy Honors Residential College

Event Type

Lecture / Talk / Workshop


Students, Alumni, Faculty/Staff


University Park Campus


Philosophy, Dornsife, Thematic Option


Thematic Option


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