We have only to understand the mirror stage as an identification, in the full sense that analysis gives the term: namely, the transforma tion that takes place in the subject when he assumes an image . . . This form would have to be called the Ideal-I, if we wished to incorporate it into our usual register, in the sense that it will also be the source of secondary identifications, under which term I would place the functions of libidinal normalisation. But the important point is that this form situates the agency of the ego, before its social determination, in a fictional direction . . . I am led, therefore, to regard the function of the mirror stage as a particular case of the function of the imago, which is to establish a relation between the organism and its reality.