Behavioural economics has challenged the normative consensus that agents ought to choose following their own preferences. This chapter argues that normative economists implicitly defended a criterion of the sovereignty of the autonomous consumer, and that current debates in normative behavioural economics arise from disagreements about the nature of the threats to autonomy that are highlighted by behavioural economics. The chapter argues that those disagreements result from diverging ontological conceptions of the ‘self’ in the literature. The chapter distinguishes between the unitary, psychodynamic and socio-historical conceptions of the self, and shows how different positive theories about preferences and the nature of the agent may determine normative positions in normative behavioural economics.