The Left Hand Of Darkness

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Episodes

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01Drama20150412

Adapted by Judith Adams

Science fiction with incredible humanity from a brilliant feminist writer. This is the first dramatisation of Ursula Le Guin's 1969 novel which is as groundbreaking in its approach to gender as when it was first published over 45 years ago.

In a snow-changed city in the middle of an Ice Age on an alien world, one young man prepares for the biggest mission of his life. Alone and unarmed, Genly Ai has been sent from Earth to persuade the world of Gethen to join The Ekumen, a union of planets. But it's a task fraught with danger. Genly is shocking to the natives. This is a world in which humans are ambigendered - everyone can be a mother, and everyone can be a father.

First Minister Estraven is the only person who champions Genly's cause, but their relationship is deeply incomprehensible and troubling. Genly's life is at risk and he must decide who to trust.

Cast:

Genly Ai....Kobna Holdbrook-Smith

Estraven....Lesley Sharp

Argaven....Toby Jones

Tibe....Louise Brealey

Faxe....Noma Dumezweni

Ashe....Ruth Gemmell

Ong Tot....Adjoa Andoh

Shusgis....Stephen Critchlow

Obsle....David Acton

Driver....David Hounslow

Guard....Rhiannon Neads

Director: Allegra McIlroy.

02Drama2015041920150425 (R4)

Adapted by Judith Adams

In the middle of an Ice Age on an alien world two friends flee across endless snow plains on a journey that will take them to the edge of their physical and emotional endurance. The stakes are high - to save a world from war, and save their own lives.

This is the first radio dramatisation of Ursula Le Guin's novel which is as groundbreaking in its approach to gender as when it was first published over 45 years ago. Genly Ai has arrived from Earth onto the planet Gethen, a world in which humans are ambigendered - everyone can be a mother and everyone can be a father. In coming to terms with their otherness - and also their sameness - Genly must let go of everything he understood about his own identity.

Director: Allegra McIlroy.