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. a photo of a papyrus boat

    50 years ago, explorer Thor Heyerdahl’s Atlantic crossing hit a snag

    Explorer Thor Heyerdahl followed an aborted Atlantic voyage with a second trip that indicated ancient Egyptians could have traveled over long distances by sea.

  2. Ol Doinyo Lengai

    Africa’s biggest collection of ancient human footprints has been found

    Preserved impressions in East Africa offer a glimpse of ancient human behavior.

  3. photo of the inside of Bacho Kiro Cave

    The earliest known humans in Europe may have been found in a Bulgarian cave

    New finds from Bulgaria point to a relatively rapid expansion of Homo sapiens into Eurasia starting as early as 46,000 years ago, two studies suggest.

  4. Anthropology

    16th century skeletons suggest the slave trade brought some diseases to Mexico

    Slaves buried in a 16th century grave in Mexico had hepatitis B and yaws, suggesting the slave trade helped spread some versions of those diseases.

  5. skeletons in Mongolia tomb

    Skeletal damage hints some hunter-gatherer women fought in battles

    Contrary to traditional views, women in North American hunter-gatherer societies and Mongolian herding groups likely weren’t all stay-at-home types.

  6. Ucayalipithecus primate teeth

    Two primate lineages crossed the Atlantic millions of years ago

    Peruvian primate fossils point to a second ocean crossing by a now-extinct group roughly 35 million to 32 million years ago.

  7. SEM image of Neandetal string

    This is the oldest known string. It was made by a Neandertal

    A cord fragment found clinging to a Neandertal’s stone tool is evidence that our close evolutionary relatives were string makers, too, scientists say.

  8. Homo erectus braincase

    Southern Africa may have hosted a hominid transition 2 million years ago

    Braincases excavated from the Drimolen caves suggest Homo erectus and Paranthropus robustus may have coexisted in southern Africa.

  9. Lucy reconstruction

    Lucy’s species heralded the rise of long childhoods in hominids

    Australopithecus afarensis had prolonged brain growth before the Homo genus appeared, but it still resulted in brains with chimplike neural structure.

  10. Broken Hill skull

    This 300,000-year-old skull may be from an African ‘ghost’ population

    The age of the mysterious Broken Hill fossil suggests it came from a hominid that lived around the same time as both Homo sapiens and H. naledi.

  11. Figueira Brava

    Neandertals’ extensive seafood menu rivals that of ancient humans

    Finds from a coastal cave in Portugal reveal repeated ocean foraging for this European hominid.

  12. Archaeology

    New Guinea’s Neolithic period may have started without outside help

    Islanders on New Guinea experienced cultural changes sparked by farming about 1,000 years before Southeast Asians arrived, a study suggests.