SLEEP POSITIONS: The Night Language of the Body by Samuel Dunkell

SLEEP POSITIONS: The Night Language of the Body

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The way we sleep reveals the way we live,"" and Dunkell traces the contours of bedroom topography--the position of the body, the placement of arms and legs--and uses them as clues to personality. Concentrating on the ""omega"" period of deep sleep rather than the twilight zone before it, he suggests four basic positions--Full-fetal, Prone, Royal, Semi-fetal--and identifies their behavioral significance: for example, theater people and others eager for attention tend to sleep in the Royal position. But there are infinite variations, easily recognizable from his droll labels (Ostrich, Mummy) and from the descriptions that accompany them. Couples sleeping in the Spoon or the Hug are close both physically and emotionally but there are many other options for expressing feelings, particularly negative ones, such as the Freeze Maneuver. At its most serious, this approaches parody; the previous ""research,"" which includes a ""brief note"" by Alfred Adler and a report for the Simmons Mattress Company, seems to come straight from Woody Allen. But Dunkell has an engaging bedside manner, friendly patter rather than psychiatric carry-on, and his book has potential as this year's parlor game. Strangers in the night will appreciate a new guide to body language.

Pub Date: March 11th, 1977
Publisher: Morrow