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The Independent Critic

Alison Doniger, Olga Lucia Alvarez, Zarifa Ghafari, Ruth Negash, Anna Linnik
Charysse Tia Harper
22 Mins.

 "The Jill of the Trade" an Effective, Engaging Short Doc 

With The Jill of the Trade, writer/director Charysse Tia Harper explores the lives of five women along with the challenges they face as they work in male-dominated fields. Already finding success on the indie fest circuit, The Jill of the Trade picked up the Best Documentary prize at the 2022 Conch Shell International Film Fest along with two other prizes with seven fest screenings to date. 

Harper has assembled several remarkable women whose stories are thoughtful, motivating, and always engaging. These include:

  • Ruth, a mining manager in the nation of Eritrea
  • Alison, a plumber from the United States
  • Olga Lucia, the first Latin American priest from Colombia
  • Anna, a software developer from Russia
  • Zarifa, the youngest mayor in Afghanistan and one of the very few female mayors 

A production from award-winning Harper's Xplore the World, a production company that focuses on showcasing cultures and social events in different countries. The Jill of the Trade is a powerful reminder of how far we've come and also how far we have to go. The stories are remarkably engaging, those of Zarifa and Olga Lucia being particularly involving for me but all five are vital and important. 

The Jill of the Trade continues on the indie fest circuit and it's the kind of film I'd love to see find its way into schools or anywhere where young girls, in particular, have an opportunities to hear these women talk about their challenges and, yes, their successes. 

Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic