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.

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1:00pm

Mon October 10, 2011
World

French, Germans Show Different Attitudes To Crisis

A funny thing about bailouts in Europe: The Germans appear to be worried sick about them, because they'll have to pay. But the French don't seem too concerned, even though they'll be paying too — and they can't afford it.

2:59pm

Thu September 29, 2011
Europe

French Feminists Say 'Non' To 'Mademoiselle'

In France, feminists are trying to do away with the word mademoiselle, which they see as separating women into two categories — married and unmarried — in a manner men aren't subjected to.
Thurston Hopkins Getty Images

Feminists in France say the Dominique Strauss-Kahn scandal has forced the country to confront longstanding sexist attitudes. Buoyed by this new awareness, they are now taking on what they see as one of the most entrenched, if not discreet, barriers to gender equality in France: the word "mademoiselle."

In France, when you fill out a form — whether it's a job application or a parking citation — if you're a woman, you have to choose between madame and mademoiselle.

Too bad if you feel your marital status is nobody's business, there's simply no French equivalent of "Ms."

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10:01pm

Wed September 21, 2011
Books News & Features

WWII Survivor Stirs Literary World With 'Outrage'

After World War II, Stephane Hessel went on to aid in the drafting of the United Nation's Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Indigene editions La Voix de l'Enfant

One of the literary world's unexpected successes over the past year has been a book written by former World War II French resistance fighter Stephane Hessel. In Time for Outrage, Hessel calls for young people to resist the injustices of today's world — and it would seem he's struck a nerve.

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1:00pm

Mon September 12, 2011
NPR Story

Explosion At French Nuclear Waste Plant Kills 1

An explosion at a nuclear waste processing plant in France has left one person dead and four others injured — one seriously. The French nuclear authority says the blast was contained within a furnace, and there no leak of radioactive material. The plant, which lies about 25 miles north of Avignon, is not involved in electricity production and has no nuclear reactors.

8:04am

Sun September 11, 2011
Europe

France Remembers Sept. 11 Attacks

France is marking the anniversary with an event in Paris described as the largest commemoration outside the U.S. French President Nicolas Sarkozy said America and its allies emerged victorious after the attacks.

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