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The idea of a self, or being selves is a cultural concept.

  1. The very concept of the stable ego has itself been challenged -- it has been suggested that our 'selves' as entities, as discrete and identifiable beings, is a cultural concept, that 'we' are in fact processes of symbolization, not stable beings. We 'occupy' different realms of meaning (this is known as the de-centered ego); we are produced by language, or by symbolization in various forms (the focus of much post-structural thought on language as the sole means of and process of symbolization may be a limitation) and as such exist as unstable vortices of meaningfulness; much of what we may mean or be is generated by forces which have been repressed and are experiences in displaced ways, so that Lacan has suggested that who we really are in our unconscious, not our highly modulated and culturally controlled conscious selves.

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