It is great to see academic institutions such as Harvard accepting Hip-Hop with open arms. Recently, there were headlines about Outkast and Kanye West lectures becoming a part of course work for a few courses. An English major at Harvard University became the first student ever to submit a rap album for his senior thesis. In an interview, he said that he spent around a year in writing and producing the album, ‘Liminal Minds‘. He finally got the second-highest available grade: Suma Cum Laude Minus. He fearlessly uploaded the lyrics on Genius.
Shaw says that he was influenced by Geoffery Chaucer’s classic work, ‘The Canterbury Tales‘ and ‘James Baldwin’. As a matter of fact, these are tales told from the perspective of many different characters. Shaw’s album revolves around black identity in America. “Some people don’t consider rap a high art form” , the Stone Mountain, Ga. native said: “But poetry and rap are very similar. Rhyming poems were very common in old English poetry.”
However, the album is available on SoundCloud for everyone to listen. Shaw is definitely a gifted rapper and a writer. He has a year-long software engineering internship lined up after college.
Harvard has previously been appreciated by the Hip-Hop community for welcoming rap music and this time this guy submitting Harvard Rap Thesis As a result, they’ve been using it as a tool for education and creating awareness about prevailing social happenings. On the other hand, Harvard recently added four classic hip-hop albums to its Harvard Rap Thesis library archive as part of the 9th Wonder-led. “These Are the Breaks” program for the school’s W.E.B. DuBois Institute for African and African-American Research. Kendrick Lamar’s ‘To Pimp A Butterfly‘ made the cut along with Lauryn Hill’s ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’, Nas‘ ‘Illmatic’, and A Tribe Called Quest’s ‘The Low End Theory‘.