Richard Dooling

Professor Rick Dooling

Richard Dooling Lecturer



Professor Richard Dooling began teaching at the College of Law in January 2008 after almost two decades of working in the publishing, television, and film industries. He attended the St. Louis University School of Law, and worked in private practice for five years before launching a career as a novelist after his second novel, White Man’s Grave, was nominated for the National Book Award in 1994. The author of five novels and two books of nonfiction, Professor Dooling was also co-writer and co-producer with Stephen King for Stephen King’s Kingdom Hospital ABC primetime in 2004. He is also a regular contributor to the New York Times opinion page and writes often about technology and the first amendment. Professor Dooling teaches Entertainment Law, Mass Communications Law, Legal Profession, and Law and Literature.


Entertainment Law Law 615 (3 cr hr)
A comprehensive survey and analysis of the laws governing the entertainment industry, artists, and their representatives. Students will learn about legal restraints on entertainment, including censorship of sex and violence, defamation, and privacy and publicity rights. We will also cover intellectual property in entertainment assets: copyright, trademark, artistic credits, and “moral rights.” Students will acquire a working vocabulary of important entertainment transactions, such as publishing agreements, film and television option agreements, and agent and personal management contracts. The course includes hands-on analysis of entertainment contracts, especially in the publishing, movie, and television industries. The lectures also feature examples of real-life, practical knowledge from Professor Dooling's misadventures in Hollywood doing screenwriting and television production, and his publishing industry experiences as an author, novelist, and journalist.

First Amendment: Freedom of Speech & Press Law 649/G (3 cr hr)
Freedom of Speech and of the Press in the age of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and reporters going to jail for refusing to reveal their sources. Topics include free speech, free press, fair trial, defamation, privacy, state secrets, indecency, obscenity, censorship, commercial speech, media access to trials, jails, and executions. (Formerly known as Mass Communications Law)

Legal Profession Law 790/G (3 cr hr)
A systematic study of the principles of professional responsibility governing the practice of law in the United States. This course meets the faculty's requirement for a course in professional responsibility.

Law & Literature Law 712/G (3 cr hr)
In Law & Literature, we will study the law-in-literature, and the law-as-literature. Novelists, poets, and playwrights dramatize the law and legal events in ways that the bare fact patterns of caselaw cannot. We will read literature that examines "the law" as an object of fascination and revulsion. We will enrich our professional lives by studying great characters, as they struggle with the seamless web called LAW. We will also examine the law-as-literature. Legal writers employ most of the literary devices found in literature, such as narrative structure, metaphor, and ambiguity, to name only a few. We will examine legal texts using the tools of literary analysis and explore the literary aspects of the law. Before beginning our careers as lawyers, we'll try to pause and absorb the wisdom of those who have gone before us. Mixing law and literature in the laboratories of our imaginations, we shall also try to unravel the many ways we conceal, or reveal, meaning in texts.




Rapture For The Geeks: When AI Outsmarts IQ,(New York: Crown 2008)

The Journals of Eleanor Druse: Investigation of the Kingdom Hospital Incident(New York: Hyperion, 2004) under pseudonym, Eleanor Druse, tie-in for Stephen King's Kingdom Hospital. ABC, Sony Pictures

Bet Your Life,(New York: Harper Collins, 2002) - New York Times Notable Book of the Year

Brain Storm,(New York: Random House, 1998) -- New York Times Notable Book of the Year

Blue Streak: Swearing, Free Speech & Sexual Harassment,(New York: Random House, 1996)

White Man's Grave,(New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1994) -- New York Times Notable Book of the Year and Finalist for the National Book Award

Critical Care,(New York: William Morrow, 1992)


First, Tell No Lies: A Hippocratic Oath for Lawyers, presented at the University of Nebraska College of Law, Estate & Business Planning CLE May 15th, 2016

Rappinig on Facebook: True Threats or Hip Hop Lyrics in Elonis v. United States, sponsored by The Federalist Society at University of Nebraska College of Law, April 10th, 2015

The Ethical Lawyer Goes To The Movies: Great Films Featuring the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct, presented at University of Nebraska College of Law, Estate & Business Planning CLE, May 16th, 2014

Technology and The Model Rules of Professional Conduct, presented at University of Nebraska College of Law, Estate & Business Planning CLE, May 2012

Clever Apes, New Mysterians, Folk Psychologists, Computational Brains: Is The Mind Anything More Than The Brain? Part 2, presented at the University of Pennsylvania: Center for Neuroscience & Society, March 15th, 2011


Dolan's Cadillac,  a Stephen King short story, screenplay by Richard Dooling

Medicare's Generation Gap,  New York Times Opinion Essays, August 17th, 2009

The Rise of the Machines,  New York Times Opinion Essays, October 8th, 2008

The Wizard Drops The Curtain,  New York Times Opinion Essays, May 9th, 2007

Diary of An Immortal Man (2000) "Suppose you could live forever . . . ?",  Esquire Magazine, 2000, Cover story and National Magazine Award Finalist

Stephen King's Kingdom Hospital,  (ABC Primetime), Producer and co-writer, 2004

Book Review, Good Politics, Bad Law (reviewing Hate Crimes: Criminal Law & Identity Politics, by James B. Jacobs and Kimberly Potter,  New York Times, Oxford University Press. 1998)

Punish Crime, Not Hate,  Wall Street Journal, July 20, 1998, Pg. A18

Defining Dictionaries Down,  Wall Street Journal, June 29, 1998, g. A18

What a Niggling Offense! Oops, We Mean,  Wall Street Journal, Jan. 29, 1999, Pg. A14

The Millennium That Was: From Swearing By to Swearing,  Wall Street Journal, July 6, 1999, A14

Critical Care,  st novel, was made into a major motion picture by Director Sidney Lumet, starring James Spader, Helen Mirren, Albert Brooks, and Anne Bancroft

Bush Pigs, a short story,  The New Yorker, 1994


J.D., Saint Louis University School of Law, 1987
R.R.T., University of Chicago, 1983
B.A, Saint Louis University, 1976

Areas of Expertise


Visiting Professor of Law, 2009