Both the author and Reinhold Niebuhr, who supplied the preface, feel that there are ""confusions... prevalent in America -- about the importance and nature of"" the Declaration of Human Rights proclaimed by the U.N. in 1948. Mr. Cranston subjects the proclamation to a very close reading and makes careful distinctions between the Natural Rights, legal rights and moral rights which he finds lumped under the general heading of ""Human Rights"". The text is brief -- meditative rather than argumentative in tone. The supporting examples used to illustrate the items under discussion are to the point. An appendix gives the full Declaration and there is a rather specialized bibliography. A basic book for all collections that hope to provide a balanced view of United Nations matters.