- subject matter, language, or style producing or designed to produce startling or thrilling impressions or to excite and please vulgar taste.
- the use of or interest in this subject matter, language, or style: The cheap tabloids relied on sensationalism to increase their circulation.
- the doctrine that the good is to be judged only by the gratification of the senses.
- the doctrine that all ideas are derived from and are essentially reducible to sensations.
- Psychology. sensationism.
- the use of sensational language, etc, to arouse an intense emotional response
- such sensational matter itself
- Also called: sensualism philosophy
- the doctrine that knowledge cannot go beyond the analysis of experience
- ethicsthe doctrine that the ability to gratify the senses is the only criterion of goodness
- psychol the theory that all experience and mental life may be explained in terms of sensations and remembered images
- aesthetics the theory of the beauty of sensuality in the arts
n.1846 in philosophy, “theory that sensation is the only source of knowledge;” 1865, of journalism that aims to excite the feelings, from sensational + -ism.