Outside Essay Assignment for Writing in the Humanities at Mount Angel Seminary

by Sister Hilda Kleiman, OSB

At Mount Angel Seminary, I assign the College One students in Writing in the Humanities two essays based on a colorful mosaic of the Annunciation in the lobby of Annunciation, one of the main buildings of the seminary.

The mosaic of the Annunciation, based on an icon
written through the hand of Br. Claude Lane, OSB.

The first essay is an in-class essay in which the student describes the mosaic in as much detail as he can.   After completing the in-class essay, the student receive this assignment sheet for the second essay in which they draw a larger theme from the details they have gathered.

Outside Essay #2: Analyzing an Image
Writing in the Humanities - Spring 2014

Write a 3-4 page essay in which you explain your main response to the Annunciation mosaic.  Your thesis statement should be clearly stated and a more elegant version of “My main response to the Annunciation mosaic is _________________________.”

Your essay should include a substantial amount of the material from your description of the mosaic.  Your reader should be able to understand how your response is built on your discussion of the composition, color, and identification of the mosaic.

Your analysis may focus on a particular theme, a memory invoked by the mosaic, or questions that arose as you considered the mosaic.  What surprised you?  What perplexed you?  What questions do you still have that you would like to explore further?

Give your essay an appropriate title and make sure it is in the MLA format.

Line drawing from the Orthodox Church in America