From a biopolitical viewpoint, this artide seeks to understand recent Chilean history resorting to a critique of the theoretical discourses that made the arrival of democracy possible. We argue that bio- politics, through its different authors, provide interesting analytical tools to understand this history. Particularly, here, we argue that during the Chilean military dictatorship a type of governmentality was engendered that was based in a practice of survival, related to three axes: the production of death: the economization of politics understood as a practice that is constitutive of neoliberalism; and the elaboration of a transitional política! rationality that laid the foundations for a democratic neoliberal development. The effects of this new governmentality are reinforced by the legal excep- tionality of the period, strengthened in its turn by the Constitution of 1980.