Deborah Blum
Biography & Resources


Deborah Blum is a Pulitzer-prize winning science writer and has been a professor of journalism at the University of Wisconsin-Madison since 1997.

Blum earned her bachelor's in journalism from the University of Georgia, with a double minor in anthropology and political science and her M.A. in journalism from UW-Madison. While at the Sacramento Bee, she won the Livingston Award in National Reporting and the Olive Branch Award from New York University for her nuclear weapons series in 1989. Then Blum wrote a series on the ethical issues and dilemmas of primate research, “The Monkey Wars,” which won the 1992 Pulitzer Prize, the 1992 science-writing award of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the 1992 Clarion Award from Women in Communications. It also led Sigma Xi, the scientific research society, to name her an honorary member for her service to science. In 1995, she wrote her last series for The Sacramento Bee, called “Only Human,” which explored biology of behavior and which won the national Sigma Delta Chi award for non-deadline reporting. Blum expanded her newspaper series on primate research into a book, also called The Monkey Wars, which was published by Oxford University Press in 1994.

She is also the author of Sex on the Brain (1997), named a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, Love at Goon Park: Harry Harlow and the Science of Affection, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and named a Best Book of the Year by Library Journal, Publisher's Weekly and Discover Magazine, and is the co-editor of A Field Guide for Science Writers. Blum's latest book is Ghost Hunters: William James and the Scientific Search for Life After Death.

Blum has also written for publications including The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Discover, Psychology Today, Mother Jones, Rolling Stone Books, The Utne Reader and More magazine. She was president of the National Association of Science Writers from 2002-2004 and currently serves on advisory boards to the Council for Advancement of Science Writing and the World Federation of Science Journalists. She is a member of the Board on Life Sciences for the National Academy of Sciences.

selected books

Ghost Hunters: William James and the Search for Scientific Proof of Life After Death
(Penguin, 2007)
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A Field Guide for Science Writers: The Official Guide of the National Association of Science Writers
(Oxford University Press, USA; 2 edition, 2005)
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Love at Goon Park: Harry Harlow and the Science of Affection
(Berkley Trade; Reprint edition, 2004)
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Sex on the Brain: The Biological Differences Between Men and Women
(Penguin, 1998)
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The Monkey Wars
(Oxford University Press, USA; Reissue edition,1996)
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articles & interviews

Broadcasts on WIE Unbound

Ghost Hunter