Part of the continuing allure of Philip Jessup’s account of transnational law, published in 1956, lies in its promise of capturing something beyond the easily visible bodies of public and private international law. Attempts to name and to frame this unseen law continue to this day. This chapter, part of a collection commemorating the 60th anniversary of the publication of Transnational Law, examines the intellectual holding pen created by Jessup for other rules and sources of law, his “larger storehouse of rules”. While this initiative was firmly aimed at expanding the view of law to see beyond the state and to center practice in its vision field, the tools and methods for studying and understanding law in this way remain unclear. Emerging from an awareness that the transnational law “lens” delivers but a selective view, and that forms and manifestations of legal knowledge continue to elude us, are tantalizing possibilities for future research.
Natasha Affolder, "Transnational Law as Unseen Law" in Peer Zumbansen, ed, The Many Lives of Transnational Law: Critical Engagements with Jessup’s Bold Proposal (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press [forthcoming in 2020]).