Happy Sunday – and welcome to the best of The Conversation.

First, here are a few of our recently published stories:

Like most people, I’ve watched too many elderly family members struggle with dementia. And, like many people, I have wondered if I will face a disease like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s as my own brain ages. So I wasn’t surprised to see that an article that explores the connection between a common sleep disorder and neurodegenerative diseases was our most-read story last week.

“Someone with REM sleep behavior disorder will act out their dreams,” writes Anelyssa D'Abreu, a University of Virginia neurologist who specializes in geriatric neurology. “For reasons that are poorly understood, the dream content is usually violent – patients report being chased, or defending themselves, and as they sleep they shout, moan, scream, kick, punch and thrash about.”

The disorder affects about 2% of the population over 65. A long-term study of patients with the disorder who didn’t have brain conditions found that “after 12 years, 73.5% of those with REM sleep behavior disorder had developed a related neurodegenerative disorder.”

On another note, this evening will feel a bit empty for “Succession” fans since the finale aired last week. To fill the hole, try reading music professor Delia Casadei’s exploration of why one of the series’ “best elements is its soundtrack.”

Later this week, we’ll bring you stories about how more backyard homes and granny flats can help alleviate the housing crisis, free speech on campus and why we associate peaches with Georgia.

Emily Costello

Managing Editor

Readers' picks

Past age 50, men are much more likely to have REM sleep behavior disorder than women. Jose Luis Pelaez/Stone via Getty Images

A little-understood sleep disorder affects millions and has clear links to dementia – 4 questions answered

Anelyssa D'Abreu, University of Virginia

REM sleep behavior disorder is characterized by acting out dreams, which may include shouting, kicking and punching during sleep.

Editors' picks

While the Roy siblings are shielded by their wealth, the show’s music chips away at their armor. Macall Polay/HBO

How the sounds of ‘Succession’ shred the grandeur and respect the characters so desperately try to project

Delia Casadei, University of California, Berkeley

Composer Nicholas Britell festoons earnest Romantic music with sounds that gleefully desecrate it, underscoring the show’s emotional core: a lust for power joined by immense self-loathing.

News Quiz 🧠

  • The Conversation U.S. weekly news quiz

    Test your knowledge with a weekly quiz drawn from some of our favorite stories. This week's quiz is loaded with spoilers, from details of the "Succession" finale and the debt limit bill to the lives of super rich heterosexuals.

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