Eleanor Beardsley

Eleanor Beardsley

Correspondent, Paris

Eleanor Beardsley began reporting from France for NPR in June 2004, following all aspects of French society, politics, economics, culture and gastronomy.

Beardsley has covered both 2007 and 2012 French presidential elections as well as the Arab Spring in Tunisia, where she witnessed the overthrow of the autocratic President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali. She 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 French. 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 Masters 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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The Bataclan concert hall in Paris was the scene of carnage during November's terrorist attack. The lifesaving actions that night by Didi, a security guard of North African descent, have only recently become known. Survivors say he may have helped save 400 to 500 people. Francois Guillot /AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Children from a refugee camp in the Dutch city of Nijmegen arrive for their first day of school last month. Robin Van Lonkhuijsen/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Former Baywatch star Pamela Anderson (right) holds a news conference in Paris on Tuesday against the production of foie gras. Mustafa Yalcin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images hide caption

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French soldiers guard access to a Jewish school in Marseille a day after a teenager wielding a butcher knife wounded a teacher. Boris Horvat/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Flowers and messages at Paris' Place de la Republique commemorate the victims of last year's January and November shooting attacks. Charles Platiau/Reuters /Landov hide caption

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A makeshift memorial at Place de la Republique in Paris, shown on December 24, is one of many sites where mourners have left tributes to the victims of the November 13 terror attacks. A coordinated series of gun and bomb attacks at several sites in Paris on November 13 left 130 dead. Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Latifa Ibn Ziaten, shown here speaking to French elementary schoolchildren in March, started an organization to prevent radicalization after her son, a French soldier, was killed by an Islamist gunman in March 2012. Pascal Pavani/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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