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In real life, Nathaniel Hawthorne worked in the Salem Custom House for a few years.
Why does Hawthorne have the narrator tell the reader he found the story of Hester Prynne in a storage room of this old government building?
To protect himself from public outcry.
To make the story of Hester sound more realistic.
To make his time spent in a bureaucratic job seem worthwhile.
To increase tourism to Salem.
To separate his public self from his literary self.