Dr Shridhar Vyankatesh Ketkar (MA PhD) was a sociologist, historian and Marathi novelist. Born in 1884, in Raipur in present-day Chhattisgarh, Dr Ketkar studied at Wilson College in Mumbai. During his graduation, he left for the United States in 1906, and obtained a master’s degree and a PhD from Cornell University in 1911. He returned to India after spending a year in London, where he met his future wife Edith Kohn.
Dr Ketkar is widely known as the chief editor of the first ever encyclopaedia in Marathi, which comprised selected writings of Indian and European scholars, Maharashtriya Jnanakosha. He also published several scholarly papers, founded and ran three magazines and wrote six novels, each with a strong sociological theme. Brahmankanya (1930) was the fifth.