Author: Nicola Jones

A Window on Humanity’s Turbulent 2021

Nicola Jones , December 16th, 2021

[no-caption] John Finney Photography/Getty Images Amid forest fires, the storming of the U.S. Capitol, private space flights and more, 2021 saw the pandemic bed in. Each time it…


How to Work With a Developmental Editor

Nicola Jones , June 30th, 2021

[no-caption] Rawpixel/Getty Images Ask SAPIENS is a series that offers a glimpse into the magazine’s inner workings. I sometimes shudder to think of my authors’ faces when they…


Is Love a Biological Reality?

Nicola Jones , February 10th, 2021

Helen Fisher knows more about love than most. As a biological anthropologist who studies the topic, she has been a chief scientific adviser to the internet dating site…


Crisis and Opportunity—A Look at 2020

Nicola Jones , December 17th, 2020

[no-caption] Ada daSilva/Getty Images The Coronavirus Pandemic 2020 will be remembered as the year that COVID-19 swept the globe. This highly contagious virus moves from person to person,…


How to Write an Essay: A Guide for Anthropologists

Nicola Jones , October 8th, 2020

[no-caption] FilippoBacci/GettyImages For academics used to the idea of “publish or perish,” writing may seem to be a well-practiced and even perfected skill. But trying out a new…


Why “We” Isn’t for Everyone

Nicola Jones , June 4th, 2020

[no-caption] Klaus Vedfelt/Getty Images Ask SAPIENS is a series that offers a glimpse into the magazine’s inner workings. On the face of it, there seems to be no…


Humans in 2019—From Discoveries to Disasters

Nicola Jones , December 20th, 2019

This image shows various views of the pinky bone of a Denisovan-Neanderthal hybrid found in Siberia. Thomas Higham/University of Oxford Denisovan Deluge This year brought a host of…


Case Closed: You Can’t Make a Knife Out of Frozen Poop

Nicola Jones , September 17th, 2019

Researchers tested the cutting potential of knife-shaped frozen human feces. Michelle R. Bebber In what might constitute the year’s strangest salvo against the scourge of “fake news,” ant…


First Confirmed Denisovan Skull Piece Found

Nicola Jones , March 1st, 2019

Three researchers stand in Denisova Cave in Russia, home to the newly classified Denisovan skull fragments. IAET SB RAS/Sergei Zelensky/Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology …


Visitor Log Chronicled for the Denisovan Family Home

Nicola Jones , January 30th, 2019

Tooth pendants (one pictured here), along with other artifacts discovered at Denisova Cave, mark the earliest evidence of human ornamentation—between 43,000 and 49,000 years ago—in northern Eurasia. …


Meet Archaeology’s Beer Can Man

Nicola Jones , April 25th, 2018

These are just a few dozen of the thousands of old beer cans that archaeologist David Maxwell has collected over the years. Nicola Jones David Maxwell doesn’t remember…


Bonobos Spied Sharing a Feast

Nicola Jones , April 5th, 2018

Bonobos congregate around a male bonobo holding an African breadfruit to get a share of the meal. Barbara Fruth/LuiKotale Bonobo Project People are weird—at least compared to other…


Sea Level Rise Threatens Archaeological Sites

Nicola Jones , November 29th, 2017

Graves that are more than 400 years old in Jamestown, Virginia, lie near the first Protestant church in what later became the United States. Jamestown is just one…


Oldest Known Homo Sapiens Fossils Found

Nicola Jones , June 7th, 2017

At the site of an old Moroccan mine, paleoanthropologist Jean-Jacques Hublin points to one of the oldest Homo sapiens skulls yet found. Philipp Gunz/MPI EVA Leipzig The oldest…


Do You See What I See?

Nicola Jones , February 9th, 2017

Social scientists have long been fascinated by how people in different cultures perceive and describe color. Michelle Jones/SAPIENS In a Candoshi village in the heart of Peru, anthropolog…


North Dakota Access Pipeline Protests Spark Historic Declaration

Nicola Jones , September 15th, 2016

Native Americans from many different tribes have unified behind the Standing Rock Sioux tribe’s protest in North Dakota against the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline. The controversial…


The Birth of Indonesia’s Cyber Village

Nicola Jones , July 21st, 2016

In Yogyakarta, one of Indonesia’s culturally rich cities, lies Kampoeng Cyber, or “Cyber Village”—a community that caught the attention of Mark Zuckerberg (right), the co-founder of Facebook, for…


Stone Age Site Saved

Nicola Jones , April 26th, 2016

A Stone Age archaeological site in South Africa has been saved from the threat of diamond mining. The site, called Canteen Kopje, is renowned for its cache of…


Diamond Mine Threatens Stone Age Artifacts

Nicola Jones , March 23rd, 2016

Researchers are panicking as a Stone Age archaeological site in South Africa called Canteen Kopje is facing demolition by diamond mining. Miners have already started to clear the…