July 17, 2013 00:00:59 GMT
A Nasir Jones Hiphop Fellowship has been established in the rapper's honor because 'his lyrical skill, social analysis and commitment' has inspired a generation.
The W.E.B. Du Bois Institute at Harvard University and the Hip-Hop Archive announce a Nasir Jones Hiphop Fellowship to honor rapper Nas. The program will assist students with personal projects that may include manuscripts, performance pieces, album work and exhibition preparation.
The rapper was chosen because "his lyrical skill, social analysis and commitment, has helped usher in an original form of hiphop debate and analysis that reflects on and represents urban youth angst and conflict as well as intelligence, confidence and ambition... He has tackled both intense political issues and hardcore street topics. In doing so, he has inspired a generation."
Nas himself says, "In my rollercoaster of a life I've endured good and bad for sure, and Iíve truly been blessed to have achieved so much thru art in my short life thus far. But I am immensely over-the-top excited about the Nasir Jones HIP-HOP Fellowship at Harvard."
"From Queens, NY to true cultural academia. My hopes are that greed for knowledge, art, self-determination and expression go a long way. It is a true honor to have my name attached to so much hard work, alongside great names like Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and W.E.B. Du Bois and to such a prestigious and historical institution, and all in the name of the music I grew to be a part of," he adds.
Nas Fellows will be chosen by a selection committee comprising members of the Harvard faculty.
Nas has released more than a dozen albums throughout his years-long career. He dropped his critically-acclaimed debut album "Illmatic" in 1994, and busted Billboard charts multiple times. His latest album "Life Is Good" was released in 2012.