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1. an individual's consciousness of his own identity or being
2. Philosophy that which is essential to an individual, esp the mind or soul in Cartesian metaphysics; the ego
3. a bird, animal. etc., that is a single colour throughout, esp a self-coloured pigeon


a mental construction of the person, by the person, but inevitably formed from social experience. Thus the person sees him/herself reflected by others, in their reactions, and these are interpreted through the lattice of self-perception. MEAD (1934) is particularly associated with this idea of the self as being a social construction; self cannot exist without society – the self is where knowledge resides, but the knowledge is about society, which surrounds it. Theorists such as Mead and COOLEY (see SYMBOLIC INTERACTIONISM, LOOKING-GLASS SELF) and some sociologists also emphasize the REFLEXIVITY and creativity possessed by social actors. This view of the self and self-identity contrasts sharply with conceptions of DECENTRED SELF recently to the fore within POSTSTRUCTURALISM (e.g. LACAN).

The 'self also receives varied formulation within PSYCHOLOGY and PSYCHOANALYSIS (see EGO-PSYCHOLOGY, OBJECT RELATIONS SCHOOL, LACAN).

The concept of self is particularly important to developmental and HUMANISTIC psychologists. Humanistic theorists (e.g. MASLOW, 1954) see the goal of the individual as SELF-ACTUALIZATION. (See also SOCIAL IDENTITY, PERSONALITY).



in philosophy, the expression of the unity and identity of individual self-consciousness. The self is one of the basic structures of the individual personality as related to other individual personalities—for example, “you” or “we.” It is the central category in various systems of idealist philosophy, such as that of J. G. Fichte.

What does it mean when you dream about yourself?

To encounter one’s self in a dream indicates that one has come face to face with issues and needs that can no longer be ignored.


A small, dynamically typed object-oriented language, based purely on prototypes and delegation. Self was developed by the Self Group at Sun Microsystems Laboratories, Inc. and Stanford University. It is an experimental exploratory programming language.

Release 2.0 introduces full source-level debugging of optimised code, adaptive optimisation to shorten compile pauses, lightweight threads within Self, support for dynamically linking foreign functions, changing programs within Self and the ability to run the experimental Self graphical browser under OpenWindows. Designed for expressive power and malleability, Self combines a pure, prototype-based object model with uniform access to state and behaviour. Unlike other languages, Self allows objects to inherit state and to change their patterns of inheritance dynamically. Self's customising compiler can generate very efficient code compared to other dynamically-typed object-oriented languages.

Version: 3.0 runs on Sun-3 (no optimiser) and Sun-4.

["Self: The Power of Simplicity", David Ungar <> et al, SIGPLAN Notices 22(12):227-242, OOPSLA '87, Dec 1987].
References in periodicals archive ?
NDAA is here to stay because of selfless acts and dedicated prosecutors like you.
Peter Drummond, landlord at The Badger, said: "Emily is one of the most selfless and giving people I have ever met, and fully deserves this accolade.
org is to champion the selfless acts of others, to create a portal into the soul of humanity and to inspire life long learning.
LAST year the Christmas Wish Campaign spread some cheer to selfless couple Ron and Cath Knowles who provide invaluable help, support and companionship to people and families with Alzheimer's disease.
Initiated in 2005 by the Abu Dhabi government, the awards are conferred on citizens and residents who better the community through their selfless contributions and good deeds.
It is important to share the stories of gay people doing such selfless and important work.
A delightful story with an important lesson about sharing joy through selfless giving, Peef and the Baby Sister is highly recommended.
Mostly, though, we learn of the war, the colonial history of its origins, and the national politics that fueled it, through the lives of Adichie's characters: Olanna, selfless, educated, wealthy, and fresh back home from London; Odenigbo, her idealist academic "revolutionary lover"; their houseboy (servant) Ugwu; Olanna's hard-as-nails twin sister Kainene, and her insecure white British lover.
Confronted with a tragedy far more significant than her own, as well as with the selfless examples of her husband and some dedicated nuns, she ultimately learns the meaning and value of love.
A wonderful testimony to the power of selfless love as expressed by beloved pets, an invaluable quality for making the most of life itself.
Although they later required medical attention, the selfless actions of Troopers Brophy and Boag resulted in many saved lives.
Written by a committed Christian, for committed Christians and those of all faiths who are committed to selfless good works in the name of the divine, The Christian Right.