The first idea that came to mind of a paradigm shift is the shift that has occurred in stand up comedy. Only a few decades ago, comedians like Bill Cosby were incredibly popular, telling very clean, and simple jokes. Comedy began to shift around the time Eddie Murphy became popular. At this time, comedy began to be darker, and was done in a fashion much like story telling. Nowadays, popular comedians’ jokes, like that of Louis CK, are incredibly dark, touching on some of the most controversial topics of life (race, gay marriage, etc.) Comedy specials are now like watching a master story teller tell the story of everyday life with an interesting spin. This comedy is a lot harder to grasp than that of the past, but also conveys very important messages about how the comedian and the audience should think about how the world works. Despite this shift, there are still some comedians that use the olden-day styles of Bill Cosby (Gabriel Iglesias, for example). I think it would be incredibly interesting to see what types of jokes comedians are shifting to, as well as discover how audiences are reacting to these jokes.
The other topic idea I have is the paradigm shift that has taken place in rap music. In the early days of hip hop, rap was the medium through which underprivileged artists spoke their mind. Artists like Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls rapped about the struggles they were currently facing, as well as what they had to deal with in the past. Until the end of this era in rap, rappers like Biggie and Tupac rapped to bolster their own reputation, and worried solely about their work. However, rap is shifting into a completely new vein. Rappers try to rap about struggles that they have not truly experienced (Drake’s “Started from the Bottom” is a great example). Also, rappers have shifted away from getting messages out through their rap. Finally, rappers constantly bash on each other to increase publicity. Chris Brown recently called out Drake on live radio. Things like this never used to happen, but are now everyday occurrences in rap. Rap is becoming more and more popular, so I think it would be very interesting to analyze this paradigm shift.