Harvard Student Submits Hip-Hop Album for Final Thesis, Passes with Honors

posted by Justin - 

20-year-old Obasi Shaw has made history.

The Harvard student is heading to Seattle to be a software engineer, but he is also a rapper who submitted the school's first ever rap recording thesis, which earned one of the department's highest distinctions, summa cum laude minus.

Liminal Minds is a 10-track album that explores the lasting effects of slavery in a manner that was inspired by Geoffrey Chaucer's 14th Century classic, The Canterbury Tales. 

The project is noted for blending Middle English poetry with Shaw's style of rap lyricism, as he transitions from song to song narrating from the perspective of a different character. 

Harvard has gone lengths to recognize the artistic, academic, and social significance of hip hop music and culture in recent times. Earlier this year the university entered Nas' Illmatic, A Tribe Called Quest’s The Low End Theory, Lauryn Hill's The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill and Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly into its prestigious Harvard Library.

You can listen to the album HERE


Records! Harvard Student Submits Hip-Hop Album As Final Year Dissertation, Graduates With A- ______________ A 21-year-old senior student at Harvard, #ObasiShaw will be graduating with an A- after he submitted a hip-hop album as his dissertation. _____________ The 10-track album titled ‘#LiminalMinds’ combines “elements of Middle English poetry with issues of racial identity in #America” and according to Obasi and took him about a year to complete. He says it was inspired by #GeoffreyChaucer’s #TheCanterburyTales and his own hobby of writing rap music and spoken word poetry. ____________ #Harvard added #KendrickLamar’s #ToPimpAButterfly and #Nas’ #Illmatic to the university library last year to signify their cultural significance but Obasi’s thesis is the first of its kind in the university’s history, since it was established in 1636. ____________ Senior students at Harvard aren’t usually expected to write dissertations but if they want to graduate with honors, it is required. He said he got the idea from his mum, who noticed her son writing rap music and performing it at open mic nights on campus so instead of submitting an essay or a collection of poems he put together the album. ___________ Obasi has now uploaded the album on #SoundCloud. It has garnered thousands of plays and explores things like black American identity and the American dream. #OnoBello #OBNews

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