Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The absence of pleasure or the ability to experience it.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The inability to feel pleasure.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In psychology, inability to feel pleasure: the opposite of analgesia.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an inability to experience pleasure

Etymologies

New Latin anhēdonia : Greek an-, without; see a-1 + Greek hēdonē, pleasure.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French anhédonie (coined by Ribot, 1896), from Ancient Greek ἀν- + ἡδονή ("pleasure"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Professor Ribot has proposed the name anhedonia to designate this condition.

    The Varieties of Religious Experience

  • {143} Professor Ribot has proposed the name anhedonia to designate this condition.

    Varieties of Religious Experience, a Study in Human Nature

  • It's being looked at to help people with anhedonia, which is an inability to experience pleasure from certain activities.

    Archive 2008-12-01

  • Appetites for both food and sexual pleasure fade, creating a state called anhedonia, or a lack of pleasure-seeking.

    Healing After the Suicide of a Loved One

  • In the condition called anhedonia, which we shall hear of from time to time, there is a blocking or dropping out of the sense of desire and satisfaction even if through habit one eats, drinks, has sexual relationship, keeps up his work and carries out his plans.

    The Foundations of Personality

  • "One of the major problems in depression is what is called anhedonia -- an inability to be able to be satisfied or happy or content with normally pleasurable activities in life."

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • If you can’t take pleasure in things that used to make you happy, it’s called anhedonia, and it’s a sign of serious depression.

    Kimveer Gill’s blog « raincoaster

  • Ironically, the act of using "anhedonia" in a sentence is one of the least anhedoniacal events imaginable.

    NOGOODFORME.COM

  • (This last line belongs to Dana Stevens of Slate, and bravo to her; it's not often one works the word "anhedonia" into the pages of a major magazine, and rarer still that one does so with such offhanded panache.)

    Charlottesville Blogs

  • “The image I was cultivating was Last Man Standing, but I realized I felt sick most of the time, that anhedonia had set in, just as it did with Doug near the end.”

    Story pick: Happy Groundhog Day

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • "Decreased motivation to seek and experience pleasurable experiences, known as anhedonia, is a primary symptom of major depressive disorder. Anhedonia is less responsive to many antidepressants and often persists after other symptoms of depression subside."
    - Worth The Effort? Not If You're Depressed, sciencedaily.com, 16 August 2009.

    August 19, 2009

  • Seen in dysphoric or depressed people. A pervasive loss of interest in pleasurable activities.

    "The hedonist became anhedonic after suffering a stroke."

    August 19, 2008

  • From Greek hedonē, pleasure, and a-privative.

    August 18, 2008