Eleanor Beardsley
NPR

Eleanor Beardsley

Correspondent, Paris

Eleanor Beardsley began reporting from France for NPR in June 2004 as a freelance journalist, following all aspects of French society, politics, economics, culture, and gastronomy. Since then, she has steadily worked her way to becoming an integral part of the NPR Europe reporting team.

Beardsley has been an active part of NPR's coverage of the two waves of terrorist attacks in Paris and in Brussels. She has also followed the migrant crisis, traveling to meet and report on arriving refugees in Hungary, Austria, Germany, Sweden, and France. She has also travelled to Ukraine, including the flashpoint eastern city of Donetsk, to report on the war there, and to Athens, to follow the Greek debt crisis.

In 2011 Beardsley covered the first Arab Spring revolution in Tunisia, where she witnessed the overthrow of the autocratic President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali. Since then she has returned to the North African country many times to follow its progress on the road to democracy.

In France, Beardsley covered both 2007 and 2012 French presidential elections. She also reported on the riots in French suburbs in 2005 and the massive student demonstrations in 2006. Beardsley has followed the Tour de France cycling race and been back to her old stomping ground — Kosovo — to report for NPR on three separate occasions.

Prior to moving to Paris, Beardsley worked for three years with the United Nations Mission in Kosovo. She also worked as a television producer for French broadcaster TF1 in Washington, DC and as a staff assistant to Senator Strom Thurmond.

Reporting from France for Beardsley is the fulfillment of a lifelong passion for the French language and culture. At the age of 10 she began learning French by reading the Asterix The Gaul comic book series with her father.

While she came to the field of radio journalism relatively late in her career, Beardsley says her varied background, studies, and travels prepared her for the job as well as any journalism school. "I love reporting on the French because there are so many stereotypes about them that exist in America," she says. "Sometimes it's fun to dispel the false notions and show a different side of the Gallic character. And sometimes the old stereotypes do hold up. But whether Americans love or hate France and the French, they're always interested!"

A native of South Carolina, Beardsley has a Bachelor of Arts in European history and French from Furman University in Greenville, S.C., and a master's degree in International Business from the University of South Carolina.

Beardsley is interested in politics, travel, and observing foreign cultures. Her favorite cities are Paris and Istanbul.

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Normandy Tank Museum Closes Its Doors; Auctions Off Tanks

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Migrants walk past makeshift shops and shelters at a camp known as "The Jungle" in Calais, France, on Sept. 6. Overcrowding has become an issue in the camp. "I imagined a little camp," says Calais resident Nicole Cordier, who has protested against The Jungle. "Not an immense camp like this one. This is a city." Jack Taylor/Getty Images hide caption

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For One French Woman, An Eye-Opening Visit To Calais' Refugee 'Jungle'

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French Police Arrest 8 In Attempt To Create Explosion In Paris

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Abandoned Car Packed With Gas Canisters Sparks Terrorism Probe In France

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Nesrine Kenza (right) wears a burkini at the beach with two friends in Marseille, France, on Aug. 29. Courts have struck down bans on the burkini, but the debate has carried on and is now being raised by presidential candidates. AP hide caption

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Beach Season Winds Down, But Burkini Debate Rages On In France

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Truck Drivers Block Highway Near Calais, France, In Migrant Crisis Protest

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Tourists Step Up To Help Residents Rocked By Central Italy Quake

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Aftershocks Continue In Central Italy After Devastating Quake

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Displaced Survivors Survey Damage After Quake Devastates Italian Towns

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3 Central Italian Towns Are Reduced To Rubble After Wednesday's Quake

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Banned Burkini Highlights Tensions Over French Terrorist Attacks

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Jacques Guillaume, 73, has been repairing electric razors in Paris since 1962. Eleanor Beardsley/NPR hide caption

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The Last Razor Repairman In Paris

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French Beaches On High Alert After Recent Terror Attacks

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A sculpture of a cigarette butt inside Paris' Gare de Lyon railway station in 2012. France's Parliament sought to crack down on health hazards at the time. Another attempt is currently underway to curb smoking, which remains high among French teens. Remy de la Mauviniere/AP hide caption

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For French Teens, Smoking Still Has More Allure Than Stigma

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Famous French Flea Market Canceled This Year Over Terrorism Fears

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