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. Archaeology

    An ancient ball court sheds light on a game made famous by the Aztecs

    A 3,400-year-old ball court in the southern mountains of Mexico suggests many societies contributed to the development of an ancient, well-known Mesoamerican ball game.

  2. ostrich eggshell beads

    An ancient social safety net in Africa was built on beads

    A Stone Age network of communities across southern Africans was established using ostrich shell beads by around 33,000 years ago.

  3. Anthropology

    New fossils and artifacts show Homo erectus crafted a diverse toolkit

    Ancient hominid made stone tools demanding a range of skills and planning, a study finds.

  4. Paranthropus boisei

    The ancient hominid species that includes ‘Nutcracker Man’ may have made tools

    Newly described hand, arm and shoulder fossils suggest that Paranthropus boisei had powerful arms with hands capable of making simple tools.

  5. Archaeology

    South Asian toolmaking withstood the biggest volcanic blast in 2 million years

    Toolmakers continued to strike sharp-edged flakes as usual after a volcano’s colossal eruption around 74,000 years ago on what’s now Sumatra Island.

  6. Homo erectus skull

    The earliest known hominid interbreeding occurred 700,000 years ago

    The migration of Neandertal-Denisovan ancestors to Eurasia some 700,000 years ago heralded hookups with a resident hominid population.

  7. Nebelivka site

    Ancient ‘megasites’ may reshape the history of the first cities

    At least two ancient paths to urban development existed, some archaeologists argue.

  8. Neandertal fossils in Shanidar Cave

    New cave fossils have revived the debate over Neandertal burials

    Part of a Neandertal’s skeleton was found in a hole dug in the same cave in Iraqi Kurdistan where the “flower burial” was found in 1960.

  9. Mende people in Sierra Leone

    Some West Africans may have genes from an ancient ‘ghost’ hominid

    A humanlike population undiscovered in fossils may have passed helpful DNA on to human ancestors in West Africa starting as early as 124,000 years ago.

  10. East asian cooking pot fragments

    Food residues offer a taste of pottery’s diverse origins in East Asia

    Clay pots emerged in different places and for different reasons, starting at least 16,000 years ago, a study suggests.

  11. Aboriginal rock art

    Wasp nests provide the key to dating 12,000-year-old Aboriginal rock art

    Dating wasp nest remnants found beneath and atop painted rock art in Australia suggests the pictures were made some 5,000 years later than thought.

  12. Homo sapiens and Neandertal skulls

    A new genetic analysis reveals that modern Africans have some Neandertal DNA too

    Humans migrating back to Africa brought genetic material from humans’ extinct Neandertal relatives along for the ride.