Eleanor Beardsley began reporting from France for NPR in 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.
In France, Beardsley has covered three presidential elections including the surprising upset of outsider Emmanuel Macron in 2017. Less than two years later, Macron's presidency was severely tested by France's Yellow vest movement, which Beardsley followed closely.
Beardsley especially enjoys historical topics and has covered several anniversaries of the Normandy D-day invasion as well as the centennial of World War I.
In sports, Beardsley has followed the Tour de France cycling race, she covered the 2014 European soccer cup and she will follow the Women's World Soccer Cup held in France in June 2019.
Prior to moving to Paris, Beardsley worked for three years with the United Nations Mission in Kosovo. She also worked as a television news producer for French broadcaster TF1 in Washington, DC, and as a staff assistant to South Carolina 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. "I love reporting on the French because there are so many stereotypes about them 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, South Carolina, 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.
The increased friction follows the beheading of a French teacher after he showed his class caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad. The two countries have sharp foreign policy differences.
After letting its guard down this summer, Europe is dealing with a massive second wave of the coronavirus that doctors say will most likely be more deadly than the first.
The attack was carried out on Friday in apparent response to a lesson about freedom of expression that showed the students cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad.
People shocked over the beheading of a teacher in a Paris suburb held rallies on Sunday while police continued making arrests. An extremist accused the teacher of insulting the prophet Muhammad.
As the parts of the U.S. experience a surge in new COVID-19 cases, other countries are also seeing a spike in infections.
Rafael Nadal won the French Open for his 20th career Grand Slam singles title, tying the record of Roger Federer.
The pandemic has major repercussions for the world of fashion. That could be a good thing because fast fashion can be ecologically devastating.
La Maestra, held in Paris this September, is the first fully realized competition solely for women conductors — an effort to help balance a male-dominated field.
An arrest has been made in the incident outside the building where a dozen people were gunned down in 2015 in apparent retaliation for the publication of cartoons that satirized the Prophet Muhammad.
Health officials in a number of European countries are reporting sharp increases in coronavirus infections and are warning of more hospitalizations and deaths in the months ahead.