Eleanor Beardsley

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.

Pages

Parallels
8:04 am
Sun September 28, 2014

Reporter's Notebook: In Eastern Ukraine, A Bellicose Mood Prevails

A teacher spreads a plastic sheet to prevent rain from further damaging the shelled top floor of Gymnasium 33, a high school in Donetsk. The school was hit by Ukrainian shelling on Aug. 27. Many schools are unable to accommodate students due to damaged facilities and unpaid teachers.
John MacDougall AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 28, 2014 9:06 am

During my recent reporting trip to cover the Ukrainian conflict in the eastern city of Donetsk, I stayed at one of the city's last functioning hotels. It also happens to be the unofficial separatist headquarters, affording me a close-up glimpse of the leaders of the so-called Donetsk People's Republic.

This is the name the separatists have given to this part of eastern Ukraine they want to become independent.

Read more
World
3:27 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

Algerian Extremists Kill French Hostage

Originally published on Thu September 25, 2014 11:26 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

A French hostage has been killed in Algeria by a group claiming to be working with the so-called Islamic State or ISIS. The French hostage was captured on Sunday, and he was killed after French warplanes struck ISIS targets in Iraq.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Read more
Europe
3:52 am
Mon September 15, 2014

The Streets Are Empty As The Shells Keep Falling In Eastern Ukraine

Smoke rises near Donetsk's airport on Sunday amid increased shelling. Pro-Russian forces are trying to dislodge Ukrainian troops. The renewed fighting is testing a fragile cease-fire.
Philippe Desmazes AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 1:48 pm

We ride through the empty streets of Donetsk, closely following a van of monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the multinational organization making sure the peace in eastern Ukraine is being adhered to by both sides.

Leading our convoy is a local police car from the Donetsk People's Republic, the unofficial name given to this area by the rebels aspiring to separate from Ukraine.

Read more
Europe
5:40 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Life In Eastern Ukraine Returns To Something Like Normalcy

People wait for a bus in the empty streets of Donetsk on Tuesday. The city's population, which was 900,000, is now down to around 300,000. It is beginning to return to normal following a cease-fire, which was signed last week and is mostly holding. But residents are divided over the region's future.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 12, 2014 12:05 pm

Irina Vladimirovna's four small children skip down a broad sidewalk in downtown Donetsk, in eastern Ukraine, happy to be able to play outdoors again. The 33-year-old mother and kindergarten teacher strolls behind with her mother, Ludmila Timofeyvna. They've been living for weeks in an underground shelter to escape this summer's shelling between separatists and the Ukrainian government.

"We had nowhere else to escape to," Vladimirovna says.

Read more
Parallels
12:42 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

After A Tumultuous Summer, Ukrainian Kids Return To School

Many students at Kiev's Lyceum for the Humanities have relatives in Russia or parts of eastern Ukraine controlled by separatists. The conflict has divided families and caused many problems, they say, but it has also strengthened their sense of Ukraine's identity.
Eleanor Beardsley NPR

Originally published on Mon September 8, 2014 5:53 pm

Music resounds through the hallways to signal the end of class at Kiev's Lyceum for the Humanities, one of the Ukrainian capital's top public high schools.

Lively students dressed in dark blue school uniforms pour into the stairwells as they make their way to the next class. Once they're seated at their desks, their teacher explains that today a foreign journalist has come to meet them.

Read more
Europe
7:00 am
Sun September 7, 2014

In Kiev, A New Patriotism Cemented In Russia's Shadow

Sergei Kozak, a soldier injured in the last cease-fire, says it is up to Russian whether or not the current cease-fire holds.
Eleanor Beardsley NPR

Originally published on Sun September 7, 2014 11:51 am

A cease-fire in eastern Ukraine appears to be collapsing, with both the Ukrainian government and separatist forces accusing each other of violating it. That won't come as a surprise to the people of the Ukrainian capital of Kiev, who are deeply skeptical.

Read more
Europe
3:08 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Ukraine Cease-Fire Brings End To 5 Months Of Violence

Originally published on Fri September 5, 2014 7:39 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Read more
Europe
3:08 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

At NATO Summit, U.S. And Europe Ready New Sanctions Against Russia

Originally published on Fri September 5, 2014 7:39 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Read more
World
9:58 am
Fri September 5, 2014

Ukraine Says It Reached A Cease-Fire Deal With Separatists

Originally published on Fri September 5, 2014 11:17 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Europe
4:16 am
Fri August 29, 2014

Political Crisis Exposes France's Economic Problems

Originally published on Fri August 29, 2014 7:00 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Pages