"What we have here is a dreamer. Someone completely out of touch with reality." -Jeffrey Eugenides
A story about love, sex, death, passion, fear and obsession, The Virgin Suicides centres around the mysterious Lisbon sisters. Long before the first suicide, of Cecilia (the youngest), the five beautiful sisters are watched obsessively by the entire neighbourhood. The boys that once loved them from afar, try to impose order on a tragedy that defies explanation and haunts them even as adults. For still, the question remains- why did all five of the Lisbon girls have to die?
The second youngest of the Lisbon girls, the beautiful, mischievous and adventurous, Lux epitomizes all that the boys desire about the sisters. Although her smoking and sexual activity hint at a self-destructive nature, Lux appears to act clearly and deliberately, leaving the boys to wonder about her real plans. Lux’s character retreats behind a series of constraints on her femininity. For instance, this is demonstrated when Mrs Lisbon wipes off her lipstick and orders her to change into less revealing clothes. However, Lux proves rebellious when she defies these restrictions by accepting a ride on a motorcycle, fraternising with delinquent boys outside the high school and dating the neighbourhood heartthrob, Trip Fontaine.
By the middle of Chapter Three, the recently deceased Cecilia, along with her sisters Bonnie, Mary and Therese are only given a passing mention whilst Lux emerges as a heroine of singular importance. Lux’s power over the neighbourhood boys is most significantly represented through the symbol of the bra on the crucifix. Most simply, the bra on the crucifix represents Lux’s sexual rebellion against Mrs Lisbon’s strict Catholic rules. In addition to this, the fact that the bra is draped over Cecilia’s crucifix represents the apparent juxtaposition and tension created between the shy, retiring, suicidal Cecilia and the Vigorous, sexy Lux.
"We knew finally, that the girls were really women in disguise, that they understood love and even death...". -Jeffrey Eugenides