Strangers to Us All
Lawyers and Poetry

Saul Touster


Saul Touster is professor emeritus of American Studies and Legal Studies and retired director of the Legal Studies Program at Brandeis University where he founded the Humanities and the Professions Program in 1981. The Humanities and the Professions Program developed seminars on law and literature for judges to share and reflect on ethical issues they had confronted (or failed to confront) in their careers. The program, widely acclaimed, was expanded over the years to include judicial educators, teachers, lawyers, doctors, public officials, and leaders in the fields of business and health care.

Touster obtained his undergraduate degree from Harvard in 1946, and his J.D. from Harvard in 1948. After law school, he practiced law in New York City, and in 1955 joined the faculty at SUNY-Buffalo School of Law as a professor of law. After several years of university administration, he joined the Brandeis faculty in 1979 to direct the university’s undergraduate education in law. In 1982 he was named the Joseph M. Proskauer Professor in Law and Social Welfare in the Brandeis Heller Graduate School for Advanced Studies in Social Welfare.

Following his retirement in 1993, Touster undertook a study of the Holocaust and discovered significant documents that became the basis for A Survivors’ Haggadah (Jewish Publication Society, 2000) and the Treatment of Jewish Survivors of the Holocaust, 1945-1948: Dilemmas of Law, Care and Bureaucracy (Brandeis University, 2000) [Commentary on the background of the publication of A Survivors' Haggadah] [Photo: Saul Touster at Brandeis University, September 23, 1999][Used with the permission of Saul Touster]

Touster has, over the years, been writing and publishing poetry in a variety of little magazines. His poems in Poetry magazine include: "Charles Péguy (1873-1914)," Vol. 89, January 1957, p. 238; "The Poet," Vol. 89, January 1957, p. 238; "Listen to Your Body," Vol. 99, March 1962, p. 360; "The Doorknob," Vol. 105, December 1964, p. 180;"Green Apple: Still Life I"/"Green Apple: Still Life II"/ Vol. 105, December 1964, p. 180. [Source: Historical Index, Poetry Magazine]


"The Professor Has Appointments To Keep"
Legal Studies Forum (vol. 33, pp. 149-153, 2009)


Saul Touster, Still Lives and Other Lives (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1966)

Research Resources

Saul Touster Papers
Robert D. Farber University Archives and Special Collections
Department, Brandeis University Libraries