Zorica, Marijan and Marineta Selimović, Vranje, May 2012

The Selimović family are native to Vranje. They live in the Stara Čaršija (Old Town) district, in the house that Marijan and Zorica built in 1994, after they returned from Germany, having lived there as refugees since 1991. Marineta was born during their stay in Germany. Marijan and Zorica’s son Fabijan is still living in Germany, where he got married and has a young son, named Marijan. Zorica Selimović has been out of work for years, due to poor health. Marijan is a travelling musician and performs around Serbia and Bosnia. Neither one of them have any formal work experience, social or health insurance. Their daughter Marineta is still living with them. She finished primary school but had to leave high school during the first year, when Zorica became ill.

Fabijan, Hajam, Germany, 1994

Zorica and Marijan’s son Fabijan was three months old when the family left for Germany. The Selimović family spent three years living as refugees in the city of Hajam. Along with their children, Zorica and Marijan lived in a single room, received welfare, and felt happy. In 1994, they went back to Serbia, to be with Marijan’s parents. By the mid-1990s, all of Zorica’s family returned to Serbia as well.

Zorica with her sisters Kaja and Fakira and her cousin Tereza, at Zorica’s wedding, Vranje, 1986

Zorica married when she was 15, having completed seven grades of primary school. Marijan was 16 and had likewise completed seven grades. They had their first child after four years of marriage. Shortly after their son Fabijan was born in 1991, Zorica and Marijan went to Germany as refugees.

Marineta at her birth, Germany, 1993