“Voice from Rikers: Spirituality in Hip Hop Artist Lil’ Wayne’s Prison Blog” by Sharon Lauricella and Matthew Alexander

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When I first started reworking my essay, I knew I had to bring in his jail blog because, similar to his journal, it was someone else’s idea to publish it. The blog obviously came before the book, but those posts would have been written at the same time as the journal.

This essay is more scientific than I was expecting. They break down the percentages of topics discussed in the letters (there are 10 of them) and the comments (there are thousands of them). They found that “69% of the content… included expressions of gratitude” (20), and theorized that “Wayne engaged in spiritual practices in order to cope with incarceration” (21). One thing I was reminded of is that his journal mentions a moment when he considers rapping about god and stuff (obviously he changes his mind because he realizes that wasn’t his natural topic choice when he raps).

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