Carnegie Mellon University

Doug Coulson

Doug Coulson

Assistant Professor of English

  • Baker Hall 145J
  • 412-268-4857


My research focuses primarily on forensic rhetoric, including the relationship of ethical, moral, and legal rules or principles to particular cases, the rhetoric of judgment more generally, citizenship and nationality discourse, and the history and theory of rhetoric. My current book project explores the rhetorical strategy by which groups unite against common enemies as it appears in a series of judicial cases between 1878 and 1952 deciding whether petitioners for naturalized citizenship in the United States were "free white persons" as required by the United States naturalization act at the time. My scholarship has appeared in the Yale Journal of Law and the Humanities, the Journal for the Association of Legal Writing Directors, and the University of Miami Race and Social Justice Law Review.

Before pursuing my PhD, I received my JD from Tulane Law School and practiced complex business and commercial litigation as an attorney with the law firm of Kasowitz, Benson, Torres, and Friedman LLP. I remain a licensed attorney in Texas, I'm a co-author of West's Texas Practice Guide: Business and Commercial Litigation, 6 vols., and I author upkeep for West's Texas Business Litigation: Forms and Commentary, 5 vols.


  • Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin
  • J.D., Tulane Law School
  • M.A., The University of Texas at Austin
  • M.A., Oklahoma City University
  • B.A., Oklahoma City University


Persecutory Agency in the Racial Prerequisite Cases: Islam, Christianity, and
Martyrdom in United States v. Cartozian.
” University of Miami Race and Social
Justice Law Review 2 (2012): 117-88.

Distorted Records in ‘Benito Cereno’ and the Slave Rebellion Tradition.” Yale
Journal of Law and the Humanities 22 (2010): 1-34.

Legal Writing and Disciplinary Knowledge-Building: A Comparative Study.” Journal of the Association of Legal Writing Directors 6 (2009): 160-99.

Note, “‘Toto, I Have a Feeling We’re Not in Kansas Anymore’:  Voest-Alpine Trading USA Corp. v. Bank of China.” Tulane Journal of International and Comparative Law 7 (1999): 431-57.

Curriculum Vitae