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==Translator's Note==
This concept derives, in a sense, from the mythical, symbolic father of Freud's ''Totem and Taboo''. In terms of Lacan's three orders, it refers not to the real father, nor to the imaginary father (the paternal imago), but to the symbolic father. Freud, says Lacan, was led irresistibly "to link the appearance of the signifier of the Father, as the author of the Law, to death, even to the murder of the Father, thus showing that although this murder is the fruitful moment of the debt through which the [[subject]] binds himself for life to the [[law]], the [[symbolic]] [[Father]], in so far as he signifies this [[Law]], is certainly the [[dead]] [[Father]]."<ref>{{L}} "[[On a Question Preliminary to Any Possible Treatment of Psychosis|D'une question preliminaire a tout traitement possible de la psychose]]." ''[[Écrits]]''. Paris: Seuil, 1966: 531-83 ["[[On a Question Preliminary to Any Possible Treatment of Psychosis|On a question preliminary to any possible treatment of psychosis]]." Trans. [[Alan Sheridan]] ''[[Écrits: A Selection]]''. London: Tavistock, 1977; New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1977: 179-225].</ref>
==Jacques Lacan==

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