Thursday Briefing: Police Deployed at U.S. Campuses

Police officers across the U.S. entered campuses where pro-Palestinian protesters have erected encampments and seized academic buildings. Students at several universities remained entrenched, indicating no intention to back down.

The University of California, Los Angeles, was the site of one of the most violent clashes. A group of about 200 counterprotesters stormed the pro-Palestinian encampment in an attempt to tear it down. Both sides threw objects, got into fistfights and sprayed chemicals in confrontations that went on for several hours.

Nearly 300 protesters were arrested in New York, Mayor Eric Adams said. They included students at Columbia, where demonstrators had taken over a building. The school’s president asked the police to stay on campus past graduation, which is planned for later this month.

More than 1,600 protesters have been taken into custody on U.S. campuses in nearly two weeks, according to a tally by the Times.

In the Middle East: Antony Blinken, the secretary of state, called on Hamas to accept a proposed cease-fire deal during a visit to Israel. “The time is now,” he said.

Blinken also urged Israeli leaders to put off a major ground invasion into the thickly populated southern Gaza city of Rafah.

Chinese automakers are building a new generation of bigger, more technologically advanced electric cars. A suite of improvements — more storage space, bigger tires, comfier seats — are included.

All these changes are an attempt to make them more appealing to Chinese customers, and even more competitive abroad. China’s EVs could soon leap further ahead of their global rivals as exports increase.

Sanjay Leela Bhansali is a master of the grand old style of Indian filmmaking. His latest project, “Heeramandi,” is an eight-episode musical drama for Netflix about an exalted milieu of courtesans in pre-independence India.

It poses a challenge: How do you translate big-budget splendor and grandiosity for viewers largely watching on tiny mobile screens?

Lives lived: Paul Auster, the American author lauded for works like “The New York Trilogy,” died at 77. Here’s a guide to some of his most famous books.

In the 1980s and 1990s, eroticism was a common theme in U.S. films. Movies like “Basic Instinct” or “Eyes Wide Shut” all had characters who wielded sex like a weapon. Then, in the 2000s, studios focused on animation and PG-13 franchises that could play to a global audience and help studios to expand into China, where censors don’t allow sex scenes.

But Chinese audiences have since cooled on Hollywood, and so sex is back on the big screen in the U.S. “Saltburn” has an arousing-disturbing bathtub scene. Emma Stone lustfully romps through a Paris brothel in “Poor Things.” Even “Oppenheimer” turned up the heat as Christopher Nolan filmed the first sex scenes of his 35-year career.

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