Why has the contemporary Chinese labor activism failed to engender transformative social and political change? One obvious answer is the authoritarian state’s neoliberal and technological fix and continuously ramped up efforts to stifle labor movements. This article, however, takes the focus back to workers themselves. Drawing from fieldwork studies, it examines workers and activists’ resistance, focusing on their everyday interpretation of the source of their problems, prospects for a labor movement, and their sense of solidarity. It argues that Chinese workers have not acquired sufficient cognitive strength to become the much-hoped-for agent of political change.