Many of today’s more conscious rappers are putting albums out there that listen like a thesis but no one to date has actually just outright handed in a rap album as a thesis, that is until 17 year old Obasi Shaw submitted Harvard’s first rap thesis, “Liminal Minds.
Harvard put out an Instagram post which read:
Obasi Shaw ’17 submitted Harvard’s first rap thesis, “Liminal Minds,” which combines elements of Middle English poetry with issues of racial identity in America. “[African-Americans are] free, but the effects of slavery still exist,” says Shaw. “Each song is an exploration of that state between slavery and freedom.”⠀
After graduation, Shaw will move to Seattle for a one-year internship in software engineering. As for rap, he’ll keep it as a treasured hobby. “Rap is a genre in which I can say everything I want to say,” Shaw said. “I’ve been writing in different capacities, but I never felt that I found my art form until I started rapping.”⠀
And guess what! He received honors for the thesis, an absolute first!