Seminar in Transnational Law

L636 is taught by Aman

In the late 20th and 21st centuries, all domestic legal fields, as well as aspects of international and comparative law have been reshaped to some degree by developments in the transnational legal sector. In this seminar, we examine the effects of transnationalism on traditional areas of domestic law (such as contract, property and corporate law) as well as on public and private international law. Some of these effects are found wholly within domestic institutions; other examples involve various gray zones blurring the traditional boundaries of international and domestic law; still others involve law making outside and in the shadow of the state such as best practice standards in the areas of financial regulation, banking, and corporate governance; we also take into account human rights in state and non-state frameworks. The core conceptual contention of transnational law as a field of study is that many of the legislative, adjudicatory and judicial structures pertaining to global capitalism and other aspects of globalization escape the traditional binary categories of public/private, international/domestic and state /market. In practical terms, then, transnational law expands the arenas for addressing legal problems, and enriches our analytical skills for doing so.

The materials in this course will consist of a new casebook by Professors Aman and Carol Greenhouse. These materials will focus on the transnational dimensions of a number of important domestic and international law cases, emphasizing the various interrelationships between and among international and domestic law as well as private ordering. We shall focus in particular on the Supreme Court of the United States and the lower federal courts. The materials will also present key case studies, including Bridgestone in Liberia, Apple in China and Global Climate Change.

Final grades will be based on class participation 25%- -and a final research paper 75%. Attendance is mandatory and papers will be due on the last day of class of the spring semester.