When the Grimm brothers first published their Children's and Household Tales in 1812, in a scholarly effort to collate a national identity of the people, it was the beginning of an obsessive project of two intricately interwoven lifetimes.
To mark the bicentenary of the first edition, writer and mythographer Marina Warner explores the many compelling and often controversial aspects of the tales in a 10-part series, revealing new insights into the stories we think we know so well, and introducing us to the charms and challenges of those that we don't.
Alongside beautifully narrated extracts from the tales themselves, renowned academics and artists who work closely with the Grimm's rich heritage add to our understanding of these deceptively complex stories.
In the final episode, with fairy tales enjoying a renaissance across film and literature, we look to the future of these tales that have haunted our past and the fundamental appeal of storytelling.
Considering Hansel and Gretel, a universal story of the joys and dangers of youth and innocence, we speak to playwright Lucy Kirkwood about her brand new National Theatre adaptation of the tale, and explore what the many contemporary takes on the Grimms' legacy might tell us about the modern world.
Producer: Kevin Dawson
A Whistledown production for BBC Radio 4.