Mini-Ep01: Sleep Paralysis – Science, Mythology and Folklore

With special guest: Dr Ian Dunican

In this mini-episode (~20 mins), I explore and discuss the relationship between sleep paralysis, science, mythology and folklore.

References/Sources for this podcast

  • Adler SR. Sudden unexpected nocturnal death syndrome among Hmong immigrants: examining the role of the nightmare. J Am Folk 1991; 104: 54–71.
  • Adler SR. Refugee stress and folk belief: Hmong sudden deaths. Sco Sci Med 1995; 40: 1623–1629. Cox AM. Sleep paralysis and folklore. JRSM Open. 2015;6(7):2054270415598091. Published 2015 Jul 28. doi:10.1177/2054270415598091
  • de Sá JFR and Mota-Rolim SA. Sleep Paralysis in Brazilian Folklore and Other Cultures: A Brief Review. Frontiers in psychology 2016; 7. Review. DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2016.01294.
  • Young E, Xiong S, Finn L, et al. Unique sleep disorders profile of a population-based sample of 747 Hmong immigrants in Wisconsin. Soc Sci Med 2013; 79: 57–65.
  • Davies, Owen. “The Nightmare Experience, Sleep Paralysis, and Witchcraft Accusations.” Folklore, vol. 114, no. 2, [Folklore Enterprises, Ltd., Taylor & Francis, Ltd.], 2003, pp. 181–203,
  • Denis D, French CC and Gregory AM. A systematic review of variables associated with sleep paralysis. Sleep Medicine Reviews 2018; 38: 141-157. DOI:
  • Sleep Paralysis: Demon in the Bedroom