The Schmooze

Author Blog: Shades of Privilege and Deprivation

Justine Hope Blau, a writer of screenplays and books, has an MFA from Columbia University’s School of the Arts. Her memoir “Scattered: A Mostly True Memoir” is now available. Her blog posts are featured on The Arty Semite courtesy of the Jewish Book Council and My Jewish Learning’s Author Blog Series. For more information on the series, please visit:


People would often underestimate me if they knew that my parents hadn’t taken good care of me, so I used to be covert about the six years my family was chronically homeless and the years I spent in placement with the Jewish Child Care Association. People assumed I couldn’t drive, or had never been to Fire Island or didn’t know French — that kind of thing. And I’d get touchy because people who grew up underprivileged tend to be thin-skinned.

Now I’ve written a childhood memoir, “Scattered” so my story is out. And while most people give me a lot of credit for transcending such challenges, friend-of-my-youth Jacqueline Heagle is quick to give me perspective.

“You are a spoiled brat,” she reminds me.

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Author Blog: Shades of Privilege and Deprivation

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