For EndPain magazine: An interview with cartoonist Peter Dunlap-Shohl


I was so inspired by this conversation about art, life and disease I had with Alaska cartoonist Peter Dunlap-Shohl. It just published by EndPain magazine. Here’s how it begins:

Peter Dunlap-Shohl, a life-long Alaskan, worked as a political cartoonist at the Anchorage Daily News for 27 years. Deep into that career, at age 43, he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, which doctors described then as incurable, progressive, and disabling. Fifteen years later, he has drawn the story of his medical journey after diagnosis in the graphic memoir My Degeneration. Dunlap-Shohl says his Parkinson’s progression has plateaued with the help of a number of new treatments for the disease, including drugs and brain surgery. Though he has given up driving, he rides his bike 40 miles a week. (Vigorous exercise, researchers have discovered, has been shown to ease symptoms for some people with Parkinson’s.) He rode five miles to a coffee shop before this interview in Anchorage in late March.

First Q: You hate it when people describe having Parkinson’s as a “fight” with the disease. What’s a better way to describe it? …

Read the rest here. (Photos by Katie Orlinsky.)

 

 

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Julia O’Malley is a journalist who lives in Anchorage. She writes about culture, family, home, the environment and food in Alaska.

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