Intellectual perception or view, accepted by an individual or a society as a clear example, model, or pattern of how things work in the world. This term was used first by the US science fiction historian Thomas Kuhn (1922-96) in his 1962 book 'The Structure Of Scientific Revolution' to refer to theoretical frameworks within which all scientific thinking and practices operate. See also paradigm shift.

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  • The paradigm for declaring war on another country shifted from one of offense which was to gain territory to one of prevention of another war.

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  • The office environment was stifling and discouraging, as the paradigm that they operated in was one of tradition, that ignored new ideas in favor of doing things the way they had always done.

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  • Many people consider the game of football a paradigm for life, with its kickoffs standing in for childhood beginnings and quarterbacks and coaches modeling the bosses of an adult career.

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