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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Story Archive

In French Election, Established Politicians Are Out

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Far-Left Candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon Surges In Polls Ahead Of French Election

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Jean-Marie Le Pen and daughter Marine Le Pen lay down flowers as part of a demonstration in Paris in 2012. Marine Le Pen later expelled her father from the National Front party. Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images hide caption

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Marine Le Pen's 'Brutal' Upbringing Shaped Her Worldview

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Presidential Candidates Emphasize Security After Paris Attack

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Shooting On Paris' Champs Elysees Leaves 1 Police Officer Dead, 2 Wounded

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Paris Champs Elysees Attack Leaves At Least 1 Police Officer Dead

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French Presidential candidates: Jean-Luc Melenchon (left), Francois Fillon, Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron. Lionel Bonaventure/AFP and Sylvain Lefevre/Getty Images hide caption

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Lionel Bonaventure/AFP and Sylvain Lefevre/Getty Images

4 Front-Runners Set To Face Off In First Round Of French Presidential Election

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Facebook Cracks Down On 30,000 Fake Accounts In France

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Marine Le Pen's skeptic stance on the EU is an unlikely vote-winner in France, and especially near the eastern border where the EU is still popular. But even there Le Pen has some supporters. Eleanor Beardsley/NPR hide caption

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Eleanor Beardsley/NPR

Le Pen Finds Support In Pro-Europe French City

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The relics of St. John the Baptiste are housed in Amiens Cathedral. Eleanor Beardsley /NPR hide caption

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Life In Amiens: This Small French Town Sees 'Turning Point In Civilization'

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Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower's driver, Elsie Hargrave, and Sgt. Michael McKeogh, his orderly, were married at Versailles during World War II. The Battle of the Bulge broke out the same day, so Eisenhower had to leave the reception early. Courtesy of Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum hide caption

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Courtesy of Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum

Gaëtan Dussausaye, 23, heads the 25,000 member strong youth faction of the National Front nationwide. He says candidate Marine Le Pen's personality plays a big role in the party's popularity among young people. Eleanor Beardsley/NPR hide caption

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France's National Front Party Draws Young Voters To The Far-Right

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Calling On Help From Public, Investigators Piece Together London Attacker's Past

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