In a recent article published in History of the Human Sciences, 21(3), Patricia Cotti traces the development of Freud’s “sexual drive.”
A close study of Freud’s use of the terms Trieb, Impuls, etc., allows an insight into Freud’s sources of inspiration, through which I interrogate the importance he gradually granted the concept of drive before 1905. Freud first tentatively introduced the notion of ‘sexual drive forces’, then developed the hypothesis of a ‘communication drive’. There was much hesitancy in his defining the notion of sexual drive. He eventually adopted a concept widely used by psychiatrists at the time, which played a part in the recurrence of an innate — then hereditary — theory in psychoanalysis.