PARIS, June 6 France's new First Lady, keen to
remain a journalist despite her tie to President Francois
Hollande, has drawn inspiration from one of the most popular
American women of the 20th century, Eleanor Roosevelt.
"A journalist First Lady is nothing new," Valerie
Trierweiler, Hollande's partner, said in her first article for
weekly magazine Paris Match since he was elected president on
"Naturally, you need to look across the Atlantic to discover
this unique case, instead of crying scandal."
The 47-year-old Trierweiler, who has worked for more than 20
years as a journalist for the magazine, has struck a deal to
keep her job but switched from covering political affairs to
arts and culture.
Paris Match says the new focus on book and arts reviews will
avoid any conflict of interest with her personal life as the
unmarried partner of 57-year-old Hollande.
Her choice of first book to review, "Eleanor Roosevelt -
First Lady and Rebel", could hardly have been more relevant.
Trierweiler, a twice-divorced mother of three who has said
she doesn't want to be boxed into the role of "second fiddle,
first lady" - focused on the independence of a woman who refused
to live silently in the shadow of U.S. wartime President
"This mother of six comes to terms with having sometimes
different opinions than FDR and refuses to be reduced to
silence," wrote Trierweiler about Eleanor.
She went on to explain how America's First Lady began
writing for various publications before embarking on a
syndicated daily newspaper column that chronicled her life at
the White House.
"Not only did the whole American press find no grounds for
controversy, but quite the reverse, thanks to this chronicle she
wrote until her death, Eleanor became extremely popular,"
A Harris Interactive poll published last month found that
three out of four people found Trierweiler "independent" but
only a third said they found her "close to the people."
Some media outlets have dubbed her the "Iron Lady", and
caricaturists have portrayed Hollande as under her thumb.
(Reporting By Alexandria Sage; Editing by Brian Love and Paul