Music Published: May 22, 2017 Updated: February 19, 2019  |  WORDS: Staff

Harvard Student Drops Bars for Thesis, Graduates with Honors

Harvard student Obasi Shaw went about his thesis in a slightly different way, and boy did it pay off.


Obasi Shaw decided to drop a ten-track rap album titled Liminal Minds, for his thesis. He’s the first student in Harvard’s history to do so.

Each track in the album is told from a different perspective – all inspired by Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales. The album primarily focuses on the African American identity.

The album took a year to make, but the hard work paid off as Shaw was given a summa cum laude minus, the second highest grade in the department.

Shaw credits his mother, also a Harvard graduate, for giving him the idea of creating a rap thesis.

The Harvard grad grew up listening to Christian rap, and then went on to listening to the music of Kendrick Lamar and Chance the Rapper.

Listen to the album here and check out Harvard’s shoutout to him here.

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