[meta] What *isn't* frisson? There seems to be some confusion, as if frisson is simply any powerful emotion -- especially sadness -- evoked by content.

Goosebumps and chills are the only real criteria aside from the idea that the stimuli isn't so specific that nobody else could appreciate it. All of this nonsense about the definition of x word or the etymology of x descriptor is so unnecessary. Did it give you that distinct physiological reaction, the reaction we all know as frisson, and feel it may do so for others too? Then you can post it here.

It is not impossible to feel that in regard to sad material. You're misunderstanding/twisting semantics to your pleasure in trying to say that people who feel frisson for something sad have mental issues. It's not about having some kind of sick and twisted boner for tears.

When something sad is also presented in a way that is beautiful or otherwise resonates deeply with a person; maybe it's "too true" or whatever, they can feel what we call frisson, not simply the normal physiological reaction to sadness/crying/etc. When presented in a certain context to a person of certain predispositions they'll find themselves overwhelmed/emotional and sometimes, yes, excited neurons will fire at that feeling releasing dopamine and creating the aforementioned spine tingle.

I admit I feel frisson more often for stuff that is pumping me up, feels "epic" and whatnot, but I have also experienced that distinct frisson feeling with a few sad things. You cannot devalue their claim or say this is some kind of insane person's reaction. In that same vein, you're drawing a completely false equivalency with say, posting something blatantly unfunny like Schindler's List in /r funny. Maybe that just has to do with never having experienced that particular kind of frisson.

Appeals to the sidebar are rather empty; you seem to think that it discounts anything that hits the feels, period, when in fact the whole gist of the disclaimer is saying that it's about the physiological reaction, so anything that is only feels doesn't count without said reaction.

If people are having that reaction then it's frisson. You are allowed to be skeptical but your attempts at making objective statements about these people's feelings, I just don't agree with.

/r/Frisson Thread