This chapter investigates the spatial schema of containment and its role in literary modernism particularly in the narrative form of the short story. Focusing on the affective and embodied dimension of literary form and the topic of empathy, the readings of short stories by Katherine Mansfield and Virginia Woolf suggest that in these writers' work containment has the paradoxical function of opening up new ways of thinking about the human mind in relation to the material world. This suggests an anti-anthropocentric way of reading empathy and sympathy as both central and problematic for modernist writers. The result is that empathy, construed in embodied terms, is extended beyond the human domain, embracing the physical objects—boxes, cupboards, and yellow dresses—that populate modernist fiction.