In The Illusions of Economics, Gilbert Rist presents a radical critique of neoclassical economics from a social and historical perspective. Rather than enter into existing debates between different orthodoxies, Rist instead explores the circumstances that prevailed when economics was 'invented', and the resultant biases that helped forge the construction of economics as a 'science'. In doing so, Rist demonstrates how these various presuppositions are either obsolete or just plain wrong, and that traditional economics is largely based on irrational convictions that are difficult to debunk due to their religious nature. As a result, we are prevented from properly understanding the world around us and dealing with the financial, environmental, and climatic crises that lie ahead. Provocative and original, this essential book provides incontrovertible proof that the construction of a new economic paradigm - pluralistic, ecologically compatible, grounded in reality - has now become a necessity.