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Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017 12:06 am

HIP-HOP DISSERTATION

Decatur native and current Clemson University (South Carolina) Ph. D. candidate A. D. Carson will defend his dissertation on Friday, Feb. 24. “Owning my masters: rhetoric of rhyme and revolution” is no typical academic paper. In fact, it’s a 34-song rap album written, produced and performed by Carson and has already gone viral, boasting more than 50,000 streams and downloads on soundcloud.com. “Both my senior and master’s theses were on music that I’d been making,” said Carson in a release sent out by the university, “so at this point I figure, you don’t get to the one-yard line…and then put the ball down.”  In the same press release, Clemson professor Chenjerai Kumanyika described the album / dissertation as addressing “complicated questions related to…art, criticism and knowledge production in the context of the ongoing problem of global racial and class hierarchies within and beyond the academy.”  Tracks on the recording include titles such as “Grand Wizard,” “Internal Contradiction [The Showdown]” and “Impeach the President.” During his years in central Illinois, Carson spent time as writer-in-residence at Benedictine University and taught English at Springfield High School. “Owning my masters” can be heard by visiting http://phd.aydeethegreat.com/

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