Bruce Bower

Bruce Bower

Behavioral Sciences Writer

Bruce Bower has written about the behavioral sciences since 1984. He often writes about psychology, anthropology, archaeology and mental health issues. Bruce has a master's degree in psychology from Pepperdine University and a master's degree in journalism from the University of Missouri. Following an internship at Science News in 1981, he worked as a reporter at Psychiatric News, a publication of the American Psychiatric Association, until joining Science News as a staff writer. In 1996, the American Psychological Association appointed Bruce a Science Writer Fellow, with a grant to visit psychological scientists of his own choosing. Early stints as an aide in a day school for children and teenagers with severe psychological problems and as a counselor in a drug diversion center provided Bruce with a surprisingly good background for a career in science journalism.

All Stories by Bruce Bower

  1. photo of the Phoenician pool with a white statue of Ba’al in the center and the ocean in the distance

    Ancient seafarers built the Mediterranean’s largest known sacred pool

    The Olympic-sized pool, once thought to be an artificial inner harbor, helped Phoenicians track the stars and their gods, excavations reveal.

  2. A canopy over a rock-shelter archaeological site

    Ancient Homo sapiens took a talent for cultural creativity from Africa to Asia

    Excavations at two sites continents apart show that Stone Age hominids got culturally inventive starting nearly 100,000 years ago.

  3. a group of Dinka people sitting on the ground where one man dressed in blue holds a drum and others hold instruments

    Africa’s oldest human DNA helps unveil an ancient population shift

    Long-distance mate seekers started staying closer to home about 20,000 years ago.

  4. photo of 3,000-year-old pants taken from above

    The world’s oldest pants stitched together cultures from across Asia

    A re-creation of a 3,000-year-old horseman’s trousers helped scientists unravel its complex origins.

  5. an ancient bishop's headgear which was stiffened by manuscripts

    A technique borrowed from ecology hints at hundreds of lost medieval legends

    An ecology-based statistical approach may provide a storybook ending for efforts to gauge ancient cultural diversity.

  6. image of a stone point with a sharp edge

    Homo sapiens may have reached Europe 10,000 years earlier than previously thought

    Archaeological finds in an ancient French rock-shelter suggest migrations to the continent started long before Neandertals died out.

  7. Clovis spearpoints

    ‘Origin’ explores the controversial science of the first Americans

    A new book looks at how genetics has affected the study of humans’ arrival in the Americas and sparked conflicts with Indigenous groups today.

  8. image of an ancient tooth covered in plaque

    A taste for wild cereal sowed farming’s spread in ancient Europe

    Balkan groups collected and ate wild cereal grains several millennia before domesticated cereals reached Europe.

  9. an illustration of ancient people gathered around a pot drinking from long straws

    Gold and silver tubes in a Russian museum are the oldest known drinking straws

    Long metal tubes enabled communal beer drinking more than 5,000 years ago, scientists say.

  10. image of a reconstructed skull from the Omo site

    Homo sapiens bones in East Africa are at least 36,000 years older than once thought

    Analyses of remnants of a volcanic blast push the age of East Africa’s oldest known H. sapiens fossils at Ethiopia’s Omo site to 233,000 years or more.

  11. illustration of a clovis hunter aiming a spear at a mammoth

    Clovis hunters’ reputation as mammoth killers takes a hit

    Early Americans’ stone points were best suited to butchering the huge beasts’ carcasses, scientists contend.

  12. a bronze buckle shown from the front and back

    Arctic hunter-gatherers were advanced ironworkers more than 2,000 years ago

    Swedish excavations uncover furnaces and fire pits from a big metal operation run by a small-scale society, a new study finds.