A paradigm is a system of interlocking facts, theories, and philosophies that is so widely accepted it becomes an implicit framework for thinking about scientific problems. Paradigms are most noticeable when new discoveries call into question an existing problem, demanding a new paradigm. The result can be what is called a paradigm shift. An example of a paradigm shift would be the rise of Lyell’s geological uniformitarianism and Darwin’s evolutionary theory, which together replaced the paradigm of supernatural creations. The rise of quantum theory early in this century created a new paradigm in physics.
From: How The World Works by Boyce Rensberger
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