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corporate governance; human rights litigation; law school curriculum reform; lex mercatoria; public international law; Transnational law


This chapter traces the development of the concept of Transnational Law since Philip Jessup's Storrs Lectures at Yale Law School in 1955. Jessup had famously challenged the doctrinal and conceptual boundaries of both public and private international law to suggest that another concept be more adequately suited to capture the myriad normative and transactional relations across national borders. "I shall use", Jessup wrote, "the term 'transnational law' to include all law which regulates actions or events that transcend national frontiers. Both public and private international law are included, as are other rules which do not wholly fit into such standard categories". Transnational law since became a promising perspective from which to assess the regulatory challenges arising in an increasingly interdependent, globalizing world. The following chapter touches on a number of key areas where the idea of transnational law has proven most fruitful and provocative (lex mercatoria, corporate governance, public international law, human rights litigation) before drawing some conclusions for a methodological understanding of transnational law and its consequences for law school curriculum reform.A substantively updated and revised version of this article, entitled "Transnational Law, Evolving" is available at: