The nature of resistance to resettlement is examined through a discussion of cognitive aspects as well as factors influencing or evoking resistance movements. Resettlement resistance movements vary according to strategies adopted either to resist resettlement implementation or to gain bargaining advantage for improving resettlement projects. The array of tactics which people have employed to resist resettlement is broad, including legal and illegal and non-violent and violent measures. One important consideration which emerges from this examination is the expansion of resistance to resettlement into more generalized forms of empowerment. Three cases of failed resistance, which nonetheless led to increased local empowerment, are briefly explored.