Eleanor Beardsley

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

In the spring of 2007, Beardsley covered the French presidential campaign and election of President Nicholas Sarkozy, and has been busy following his flurry of activity and reforms since then. 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.



Sun May 15, 2011

IMF Chief's Arrest Stuns France

IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn's arrest Saturday has shocked France, where he was widely expected to run for the French presidency next year.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

The arrest of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the head of the International Monetary Fund, for alleged criminal sexual behavior against a hotel maid in New York City has shocked France where he was widely expected to be the presidential candidate of the Socialist Party a year from now.

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Sat May 14, 2011

Family Law At The Crux Of Algerian Women's Futures

An Algerian family enjoys a picnic in Tipaza, a vacation town about 40 miles from Algiers. Many Algerian women say that wearing the veil is not an issue in their emancipation; what matters is their family situation, which is influenced by a strict code that governs marriage and family life.
Eleanor Beardsley NPR

Algeria, which shares a border with both Tunisia and Libya, is so far just watching the upheaval across the Arab world. Most Algerians say their country is still too scarred by a decade of violence in the 1990s to endure another uprising.

Nearly every Algerian now calls that a lost decade, but no one feels it more acutely than Algerian women.

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Thu May 12, 2011

France Moves To Ban Shale Gas Drilling

Lawmakers in France's lower house of parliament have voted to ban a controversial gas and oil drilling technique. Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is widely used in the United States, but environmentalists say it can pollute ground water.


Wed May 4, 2011

Libyan Rebels Hang On To Strategic Border Crossing

A strategic border crossing from western Libya and Tunisia came under fire twice over the weekend, falling briefly back into the hands of troops loyal to Moammar Gadhafi. The crossing is a lifeline for Libyan rebels and citizens.


Thu April 28, 2011

Refugees Stream Into Tunisia To Flee Libya Fighting

There have been reports over the past 10 days in Libya of heavy fighting between forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi and anti-government rebels in a mountainous region southwest of Tripoli, prompting civilians to flee for Tunisia through a border post that was captured by the rebels last week.

Less than a week ago, the desert border post was controlled by Gadhafi's forces. But in a nighttime battle last Thursday, rebels took it.

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