Music

Harvard student submits rap album for senior thesis and graduates with honours

Obasi Shaw, remember the name.

Every undergraduate at Harvard that wants to graduate with honours has to submit a final-year thesis.

Most students write an essay or research project, but Obasi Shaw decided to do something a little bit different: a rap album.

It was the first time in the history of the 380-year-old university, and the remarkable submission, titled Liminal Minds, was awarded the second highest grade in the English department.

The concept album appropriates the structure of Geoffery Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales – with each song exploring the issue of black identity in modern America through a different character’s perspective.

For example, in the opening track, Declaration of Independence, Shaw raps:

“Behold, what we hold is three-fold—Body and spirit to be thrones for free souls. Self is the evidence, please close the freak shows, And depose the evils, our peoples are equals”.

Interestingly though, Shaw isn’t going down the musical path straight out of the prestigious Ivy League school and is instead moving to San Francisco to join Google’s team as a software engineer.

Damn, that is one impressive human.

Do yourself a favour and have a listen to the album in the player below, it’s a ripper!