CLEMSON — Clemson University doctoral student A.D. Carson is many things — poet, activist, and rap artist to name a few — but “typical Ph.D. candidate” is not one of them. So when it came to writing a dissertation, he couldn’t simply write a traditional one. Instead, he produced a 34-song rap album that already has the internet buzzing.
The album, “Owning My Masters: The Rhetorics of Rhymes and Revolutions” uses hip-hop to explore such ideas as identity, justice, economics, citizenship and language. The songs have garnered tens of thousands of views on YouTube, more than 50,000 streams and downloads on SoundCloud and hundreds of thousands of hits on Facebook, all before Carson defends them as a whole to his doctoral committee Friday in the Watt Family Innovation Center auditorium.