The emotional life of any human being can be a confusing thing. For most of us, an everyday, common sense understanding of emotional life routinely compares and contrasts the experiences of anxiety and fear, as if the two emotions are cut from the same cloth. Similarly, nineteenth and twentieth century philosophers often conflated the emotions, conceiving of anxiety as a kind of objectless fear, or a lurking dread. In this book, Brian Robertson challenges those familiar lines of thinking through a close and innovative reading of Jacques Lacan's recently translated Anxiety Seminar. What would it take to think through the problem of anxiety without the handy recourse to fear? What if anxiety were not 'without an object'? Using these questions as a touchstone, Robertson brings Lacan's study of anxiety into jarring and fruitful confrontation with existentialist philosophy and phenomenology. The book explores anxiety's relations to desire, sadomasochism, love and sexual difference. Robertson investigates the tortured relationship between anxiety, language, and speech - developing a refreshingly original alternative to received, existentialist dogma.