Say hi to Craige Schuetze, the Humanities Department faculty member who doubles as a capoeira-practicing pacifist by night.
Prior to coming to Sequoyah in 2020, Schuetze had been teaching at the college level. He also described some of the work he regularly did in his off time, noting, “I was landscaping in the summers for about four or five years, which is probably actually one of my favorite things.” Schuetze also described teaching both yoga and Iyengar yoga prior to starting at Sequoyah. When asked about what has driven him to do so much teaching throughout his life, he replied that “I always wanted to be a teacher.” He also elaborated on his teaching preferences, noting, “Eventually, I was teaching college and university-aged kids and hanging out with high school students during summers on wilderness programs. I realized that I related to high school students more. I realized that a lot of college students that I taught, especially once smartphones and the Internet became ubiquitous, felt like they knew everything. And high school students, especially ninth graders, are really willing to go on a flight of fantasy or magic carpet ride, you know, [a] speculative exercise.”
Outside of the classroom, Schuetze studies and practices capoeira, a Brazilian martial art that combines dance and music. Schuetze went to college in Florida, where he explains there were many Brazilian students and so he was indirectly exposed to capoeira. Then, for his PhD, he conducted most of his anthropological research in Brazil, where he “got to study capoeira…for a couple of years.”
What many don’t know about Schuetze is that he is legally recognized as a pacifist. Though he grew up watching The Karate Kid and wielding Nerf swords, when he entered middle school, Schuetze became aware of the problematic nature of violence and began reading Buddhist books. It was around this time as well that he also started attending meditation classes and became vegan. Chronicling his road to pacifism, Schuetze explained, “When I was 18, I knew there’s no way I could go to war, and that we don’t have an option to work in a hospital or something else. I called the local Quaker. And I was like…I just want to register as a pacifist. So I met with him and he was like, ‘yeah’.”
If you are ever bored and looking for an interesting conversation, Craig Schuetze is certainly the person to talk to. Furthermore, if you are at all interested in beginning to study capoeira or want to become a pacifist, he might also prove to be an incredible aid or resource to your efforts.