This metapsychological essay attempts to deduce the origin of the death drive from the author’s clinical experience with analysands under transference. It proposes that Freud locates the stakes of speech, as a response to the Other, at the heart of the question of languager–but under the singular modality of the death drive. Attempting to reconstruct the experience of the first men, the author proposes that the death drive responded to the anxiety provoked by their encounter with the absence at the heart of the address, or with the Other as such, before they were in possession of the myths and signifiers that would allow them to evoke that experience.

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