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(l) an outstandingly clear or typical example or archetype. (Webster's) (2) The total pattern of perceiving, conceptualizing, acting, validating, and valuing associated with a particular image of reality that prevails in a science or a branch of science. (Kuhn) (3) A theoretical model to explain a type of social behavior. (Dict. of Anthropology)
The pattern underlying the process of constructing theories and explanations and thereby affecting the form of the body of knowledge within a social domain, e.g., within 18th century science. Paradigms carry their own source of justification and are therefore less obviously related to or challenged by empirical evidence. Kuhn describes the history of science as a succession of paradigms, transitions resulting not only from the emergence of empirical phenomena an existing paradigm is unable to explain but also from socio-political interests within the scientific community. (Krippendorff)
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