I am in agreement with the posts above. Conflict is not an absolutely destructive force. Out response to conflict can help us to grow as individuals, help us learn to deal with adversity, and help us to better understand one another.
In The Crucible, Elizabeth and John Proctor both end up growing as a result of John's adultery. The growth is painful and not preferable, but there is something gained. Elizabeth learns to stop seeing herself as a powerless victim and takes responsibility for herself, claiming agency and power at the same time.
I completely disagree with this statement. Conflict is inevitable - we will all face conflict in one form or another throughout our lives. How we deal with conflict determines whether it destroys us or not.
This truth can even be seen in The Crucible where several characters meet their demise as a result of others vengeance. Although John Proctor loses his physical life, he chooses to keep his honor and his name. By choosing the path of integrity, his name will live on in his family. Abigail, on the other hand, chooses to deal with conflict selfishly. She controls and connives and it seems to work for a period of time, but by the end she is forced to slip out of town with the blood of her fellow townspeople on her head.
Other characters depict the same truth - Giles Corey dies at the hands of torturers, but he also preserves his family's land and heritage. Elizabeth struggles through the conflict with Proctor, but by the end she is able to let go of Proctor, allowing him to choose his redemption as a good man. Conflict can be extremely difficult, especially when it is unfairly brought against us, but we can choose whether it destroys us or not.
Not necessarily. Sometimes conflict is a good thing. If life is too easy and flows along without conflict, we don't know what we are capable of doing. This is the very reason the angels in heaven put people above themselves...heaven is without conflict...there is no disease, no temptation, no decisions to make regarding good vs. evil. Humans face these conflicts daily, and the ones who choose the right path...to do the good things and to help others (even and especially when those others are not known to them...examples: Katrina, the Twin Towers, other natural disasters).
Without conflict, Elizabeth and John may not have formed as strong a bond as they do in this play. After John's death, I guarantee you that Elizabeth is a stronger, wiser, more confident woman than the one we met at the beginning of the reading. Reverend Hale may never have been awakened and learned to question rather than taking everything at face value. Others in the community would not have come forth to speak out, and now they have to since the ones they have always depended on as the voices of reason (Rebecca Nurse, John Proctor, Giles Corey, etc.) are the ones being attacked. Once these leaders are gone, new leaders will need to come up to replace them.
It does not have to be destructive. Depending on how we handle it, it can be a most liberating event. You can not control what happens to you, but you can control how you respond.