Kafka’s Metamorphosis on BBC Radio 4


{Header image courtesy Miran Rijavec’s Flickr and used under a Creative Commons license.}

Note: this article was also published on SciFi4Me.com.

Gregor Samsa awoke one day to find himself transformed into a hideous insect. So starts the classic German novella by Franz Kafka. While typically studied as classic literature with the transformation a metaphor for everything from the absurdity of life to the concept of alienation, it can definitely be considered a science fiction story as well. After all, science fiction has been using such metaphors for current world problems since it began.

BBC Radio 4 is broadcasting a four-part adaptation of The Metamorphosis narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch (best known from The Hobbit trilogy, Sherlock, and The Imitation Game). The first part is already available, with the other parts being available daily. Unlike the television version of BBC, the radio broadcast is not relegated to UK citizens alone, and this production can be listened to on demand on any device with internet on the BBC iPlayer for the next 30 days.

To fans of BBC Radio 4, this concept isn’t new. Radio 4 has been doing adaptations and narrations of science fiction and fantasy works for quite a while, including Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere, various options of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series, and Philip K Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? The titles available change on a regular basis, and even include new adventures in the worlds of Doctor Who and Blake’s 7. To see what science fiction and fantasy productions are currently available to listen to, click here. For information about The Metamorphosis specifically, visit the BBC Radio 4’s section here.