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. 3-D rendering of Maya site Aguada Fénix

    Lidar reveals the oldest and biggest Maya structure yet found

    A previously unknown Maya site in Mexico, called Aguada Fénix, adds to evidence that massive public works may have preceded kings in the civilization.

  2. Dead Sea Scrolls

    The Dead Sea Scrolls contain genetic clues to their origins

    Animal DNA is providing researchers with hints on how to assemble what amounts to a giant jigsaw puzzle of ancient manuscript fragments.

  3. Arad shrine

    A biblical-era Israeli shrine shows signs of the earliest ritual use of marijuana

    Chemical analyses reveal a residue of cannabis and animal dung on an altar from a biblical-era fortress in use more than 2,700 years ago.

  4. Siberia’s Selenga River

    The oldest genetic link between Asians and Native Americans was found in Siberia

    DNA from a fragment of a 14,000-year-old tooth suggests that Native Americans have widespread Asian ancestry.

  5. 16th century painting of a grim scene of death
    Science & Society

    Past plagues offer lessons for society after the coronavirus pandemic

    Starting with the Roman Empire, societies have often dealt resiliently with deadly pandemics.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.